On Writing & Storytelling: To Write or Not to Write – Today’s Pressing Dilemma

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Hi, there, Dear Reader. How are you on this Friday, May 26, 2023 – or, if you live on the other side of the International Date Line, Saturday, May 27? As always, I hope you’re as well as your circumstances permit.

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Here in lovely Lithia, Florida, it’s a warm (78°F/26°C), humid, and sunny day, but since meteorological spring is in its last days and the wet season is already underway, the forecast for our slice of the Tampa Bay area calls for thunderstorms later in the afternoon. As a result, it’s not likely that it will be hot today, but it will be dark, rainy, and quite possibly stormy in places.

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Consequently, I seriously doubt that I’ll get much new writing done today. I’m already writing this at a later time than I would have liked – I’m tired and not in the best of moods, and this combination usually doesn’t bode well for my writing endeavors. Lack of energy and enthusiasm usually slow my thinking process significantly; I can’t focus well, or immerse myself in my fictional world, nor remember the real-life elements I draw on for some of the characters and situations in The New Story.

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I wish there weren’t a wedding ring on that woman’s finger…but I love this image.

Additionally, it’s harder to write scenes with either comedic or romantic elements when my mood is as sour as a Vlasic pickle, and because I’m at a point in the narrative where both romance and a certain amount of humor are necessary, if I decide to take a “damn the bad feelings, full speed ahead” attitude and press on with a new scene, the results might be unsatisfactory, to put it mildly.

Plus, as I said earlier, the forecast for this part of Florida (warm sunny weather till the early afternoon, then thunderstorms will pass through the region, which for Floridians is the typical wet season cycle) means that if a “boomer” is nearby, I’ll either have to use my laptop on battery power or, if I’m still not in a good mood, not write at all.

Screenshot from my WriteItNow creative writing software before I updated the scene count for the latest chapter.

I hope that I can change my attitude and get motivated. I like – no, love – this story, and I promised myself I’ll stick to it until I finish it. I’ve already written a prologue, seven complete chapters, and two scenes of the eighth chapter. If we count the prologue as a “chapter,” the total tally is eight chapters and two scenes of a ninth. (I have no idea if the chapter I am supposed to be working on today – should I decide to go the “create new material” route later – has three, four, or even five scenes. According to my progress chart on WriteItNow, I have two chapters with four scenes, two with five scenes, two with three scenes, and two with two scenes.

The chapter I am working on already has two scenes, but it does not feel like it’s finished. And since I don’t have either the patience or discipline to create an outline, I can’t tell you how many scenes I will need to complete it. It’s – in my mind, anyway – an important turning point, since it is about a key event in my ‘I-guy’s” relationship with one of the major female co-leads, and I don’t want to rush into it willy-nilly. (This is the bit that will mix elements of romance and comedy, and since it’s a defining scene for both characters, I don’t want to work on it when I’m not feeling at my best, y’know?)

And, of course, as if that wasn’t enough, I can’t shake off this feeling of “Okay. I’m committed to writing and finishing this story. All is well and good. But what if, in the end, it doesn’t sell well once I self-publish it?”

Ugh. I hate it when self-doubt and other negative emotions pop into my head when I’m trying to be creative and have fun writing a story, especially a story I care a lot about.

I better wrap this up; the light levels in my room – which aren’t that high because I keep my Venetian blinds down and closed and my curtains are drawn to avoid glare from the subtropical Sun – are getting low; soon I’ll need to turn on either the light on the ceiling or the lamp on the far side of the room. That can only mean one thing: the clouds are moving in, and it will be raining within the next couple of hours. So, until next time, stay safe, stay healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.

While you wait anxiously for The New Story, and if you haven’t read my first work of fiction yet, here’s my novella!

Published by Alex Diaz-Granados

Alex Diaz-Granados (1963- ) began writing movie reviews as a staff writer and Entertainment Editor for his high school newspaper in the early 1980s and was the Diversions editor for Miami-Dade Community College, South Campus' student newspaper for one semester. Using his experiences in those publications, Alex has been raving and ranting about the movies online since 2003 at various web sites, including Amazon, Ciao and Epinions. In addition to writing reviews, Alex has written or co-written three films ("A Simple Ad," "Clown 345," and "Ronnie and the Pursuit of the Elusive Bliss") for actor-director Juan Carlos Hernandez. You can find his reviews and essays on his blogs, A Certain Point of View and A Certain Point of View, Too.

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