I love experiencing what I call a writing epiphany. They’re not regular occurrences and I think this is what makes them so wonderful. Mine always seem to occur while I am in my little car on my way to work at around seven in the morning. This is the time of the day when my brain will be chewing over an aspect of my WIP or a writing issue and then it will make a shocking revelation. I will then whisper, ‘OMG’, squeal with delight as everything has suddenly made sense, babble about the epiphany to myself for a mile or so and then turn up my 80’s hits for a celebratory sing song. My day at work will then be a breeze. As I said above these are NOT regular occurrences!
Well, I had one of these moments a few weeks ago. I realised it was time to stop questioning my writing process because everyone has their own way of doing things. My writing process is unique to me and if it works for me than that’s ok.
My writing process does not sound like anyone else’s and this was causing me a lot of stress. I think my love of Instagram was contributing to my anxiety as a lot of people are sharing their writing processes and I am always comparing myself to others in some shape or form.
I know this sounds silly but when you are struggling with writing it is so easy to think…
‘I don’t think my writing process is working. It can’t be my draft which is at fault. My writing process is chaotic compared to the process [enter name of writer or author] uses. My goodness [enter name of writer or author] ‘s process makes so much sense! It’s logical, linear and doesn’t feel like…a creative hurricane. She looks so calm. If I adopted her writing process my draft would sound amazing and I would look calm too.’
A big shout out to all those writers who feel like their writing process can also be described as a creative hurricane!
So, I tried adopting the logical and linear processes of other writers. I bought the post it notes and the wall planners. I created beautiful spreadsheets and…I cried tears of frustration when my creativity dried up.
Here’s my creative hurricane writing process which has worked for me for years and it will make some of you twitch:
- Spend time writing bits of the story in notebooks, scraps of paper, on receipts and word documents.
- These bits are not in a logical order.
- Realise all the bits actually piece together into something bigger.
- Begin process of weaving bits until they are in the right order.
- Get stuck a number of times and then realise that there are still some bits missing.
- Realise I have more bits written than originally thought and I need to hunt for them in notebooks and on my laptop.
Now, this is the part which really boggles my blonde brain. Sometimes I find that the missing part of my story was actually written years ago and is in a notebook squirrelled away somewhere. Weird – huh?
I am no longer ashamed of my messy and chaotic writing process. It is unique to me and it works for me.
What I need to get better at is RECOGNISING that the chaos is PART of my process.
This is how my mind likes to work. Times of struggle for me are when I don’t realise that my story is in bits and I need to do some assembling.
We are all unique. We are all different. We all have different ways of doing things.
By all means try out the processes of other writers and if they work for you – great!
But if they don’t work for you, don’t stress.
You probably already have your own process which you haven’t acknowledged yet.
Please let me know how your writing process looks?
Thanks for reading my post.
I hope you have a fabulous day which includes an epiphany or two!