Thursday, August 21, 2014

Finding motivation

Editing isn't fun.

Okay, parts of it are. Rewriting can be a lot of fun. But editing your own work, painstakingly going through each grammatical error and analyzing sentence structure, can be a real chore.

That's where I'm currently at with Shifter. The novel is written, the skeleton is there, but the flesh is lacking in parts, and a few of the bones could use some tweaking. Think of it like the walking dead, halfway between the worlds of great literature and total crap. So now, I must go through the pages and bring my creation to life, piece by piece.

Obviously, it isn't going to be easy; that's not the point. My real problem is finding the motivation to get it done (I'm about halfway through the first edit). I have therefore decided to come up with a stick-and-carrot system to keep myself going.

This is it: for every five pages of Shifter that I edit, I am allowed to write 100 words in another novel. Now, some people might not think that's much of a reward. To an author, however, it is rewarding because writing is so much more fun than editing. That's the carrot. And the stick? Well, it doesn't really have anything to do with writing: for every night I slack off on the editing (without a valid excuse, i.e. illness), then I have to do push-ups. Again, for some people that might not seem like much of a punishment, but I happen to dislike push-ups enough to push through the editing. :)

That's all for now, folks. I will leave you with a poem I wrote for Aug. 18, which is National Bad Poetry Day. It's titled "I love math."

I love math.
I love it so much I could go on a tangent.
So here goes.
When I first met trigonometry, we were in high school, and I saw the syn.
I knew then that the equation was mine.
Geometry took a little time to wrangle,
but I did it, once I had the right angle.
My favorite part of math is its curves,
although it took awhile to get up the nerve
to tell math that it's got a great asymptote.
And that's no joke.
I'd have to say pi is my lucky number:
While the thought of it gives me such hunger,
at the end of the day, it's math to which I return.
And, like all relationships, there's a lot to learn.
At times, I know I've been obtuse,
and math has acute way of telling me.
It's like we're in parallel universes,
where I'm a rhombus and math is a rectangle.
Still, I'm all about equality,
and between math and me, there are no imaginary numbers, and we're square.
Anyway, what I'm trying to say is without math, I'd feel like a circle without a radius.
I love math.

Heather Kennison,