Of Chips, Remote & Writer’s Pause – The Reluctance of Rewrite

steve-johnson-F3ig12CrnGo-unsplashI’ll be perfectly honest: I have writer’s pause.

Wait, you say. Don’t you mean writer’s block?

Nope. Apparently there is no such thing as writer’s block. At least not according to Marion, my writing coach. You can read her take on it here.

There is, though, a reluctance to rewrite. At least for me. So, rather than risk offending Marion, I’m calling mine a “writer’s pause”.

Since completing the first vomity draft of my book-length memoir earlier this month, I’ve been slowly but surely procrastinating the ongoing rewrite process. Choosing to take my time instead, I’ve so far finished only the first stage (“Shake, Rattle and Roll“) of my rewrite phase.

I am now inching my way into the second stage which I call the “Making A List; Checking It Twice, or…” stage, which I’ve promised to touch on in a future post (*STRESS*!).

Not quite sure why I’m resisting and procrastinating. It’s probably to do with a perennial problem of mine: I always drag my feet when it comes to doing anything mundane, repetitive, or that makes me go “Haven’t-I-seen-this-a-gazillion-times-already?!”

Whenever a project goes from the initial fun and creative phase to the mind-numbing (but necessary) middle-of-the-mission phase, I start to get a bad case of:
“Oh-I-better-check-if… 
…there’re any new episodes of Umbrella Academy on Netflix 
…the windows are opened or closed (it might be pouring outside)
…my bed needs some attention from my suddenly stiff neck and back.”

All of which are stuff so easy to do these days thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic that’s locked most of us up at home practically 24/7.

And so before I know it, the day’s over and I’ve successfully avoided any rewriting. Or just plain writing!

Sighhh….

I think it helps to have a cup of coffee nearby. Oh wait. I don’t drink coffee! Rats….

Or maybe I just need a packet of chips. Yea that’s right. A nice packet of sour cream & onion potato chips from Pringles. Yums!

Oh don’t wag your finger at me. After all, what’s a poor writer who’s got such a notorious weak will to do? There’s always a strong urge to be somewhere else. Like the living room couch to surf the TV remote, or a quick trip (with mask firmly on face) to the nearby supermarket to buy more chips!

Anything but hunker down to do what must be done. Oops, have I made all my ex-bosses roll their eyes? Thankfully, bosses always have far more important things to read, so what the heck! Who (as my 50th birthday celebration blog reminds me) cares if they see this!!

My writer’s pause is just my reluctance to face the music. The prospect that I’ll soon have to slash and burn much of my manuscript, since there’s no such thing as a perfect first draft.

Not even if you’re Hemingway or Rowling.

Or maybe deep down, I just don’t want this to ever see the light of day, and so be subject to unnerving scrutiny. This way, if anyone asks to see it, I can tell them “oh so sorry but it’s still a rough draft so let me edit it first ok?”

No one would argue with that right?

Oh wait! I see what’s really going on here. I’ve fallen for every writer’s dreaded enemy: “The Resistance”!

Will say more on that in a future post (*More STRESS!*).

Meantime, where’re my chips and remote??!!

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