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Copyright by Pegg Thomas 2009-2015

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Oct 4, 2009
Years ago I took an oil painting class. Oil paints dry very, very slowly. This allows the artist to fiddle and fidget with her work over a period of time, making changes here and there until the painting is “just right”' Or until she drop-kicks it in the dumpster and finds another canvas... whichever comes first.

Now I'm writing and I've found that, like oil painting, authors can fiddle and fidget with their work endlessly. Computers make this both easier and more difficult. Easier because cut and paste are wonderful inventions, wasting neither paper nor ink. More difficult because it's hard to set the brake and say, “it is finished.”

How many ways can you say the same thing? More than I'd dreamed possible! Take something as easy as a character entering a room:

Donna turned the knob slowly, nudging the door open enough to peer inside. Finding the room empty, she walked in.

With a sharp kick of her high heeled pump, Donna burst into the room expecting to find her family. What met her was an empty room.

Donna knocked twice before juggling both grocery bags to one arm and fishing her house key out of her coat pocket. She pushed open the door and yelled for help, only to discover nobody was home.

Is it any wonder writing a novel takes so long? So many choices, so much to fiddle and fidget with until it's “just right” or until it meets the delete key... whichever comes first.

2 comments:

Dawn Marie said...

You have such a way with words! I cant wait to read your novel!!!TFS

Janalyn Voigt (Waysinger) said...

Hi Pegg. I'm so with you on this, being both a (closet) artist and writer. I learned in art school, and from experience, you can over-correct a painting and ruin it. You have to know the right moment to disconnect and walk away. I think writing is much the same. (Remind me a said this.) ;o)