F. Scott Fitzgerald once said; “Writers aren’t exactly people… They’re a whole bunch of people trying to be one person.”
Boy is that statement ever true with me. Growing up, it seemed most of my friends knew exactly what they wanted to be when they grew up. Most of them were wrong. Still, they knew. Me? It seemed I changed my mind on a daily basis. Some days I wanted to be a scientist. (Physicist actually but back then I didn’t know there were different types). Other days, I thought it would be awesome to be a katate master, or a fighter pilot, or a race car driver. I think I even once wanted to be a lumberjack. And that’s okay. I just couldn’t decide.
And so, I became a writer. I’ll let you in on a little secret. Most of my protagonists, (hell, most of my characters,) are versions of me. Being a writer lets me step into the shoes of a spy, or a soldier, or a barbarian warrior. The decisions my character makes are the decisions I would make. I put my character in mortal peril so I can figure out how I would get out of it.
Even now, I go back and forth about who I really am. Sometimes I’m a biker, some times I’m a hippie, sometimes I’m a jazz singer. But through it all, I know what I really am.
I am a writer.
Okay folks. I’m finally back, I promise. I really mean it this time. I swear. So I’m not sure if anyone even checks this blog anymore. God knows I don’t. But again, that’s going to change.
Anyway, part of the problem is that I’ve been trying to keep things focused on my career as a writer. Unfortunately, so far I only have variations on two themes. Either I’m working really hard on writing and things are coming along swimmingly or alternatively, I haven’t written a damn thing lately and here are my whiny excuses why. Either of these can get very boring when I type them over and over again. Not just for you but for me as well. Especially when as of late it would mostly be the latter.
So here are the changes. First, I’m going to make a serious effort to write a blog every day. Well, Monday through Friday. Well, most of the time. I’m only human after all. Don’t yell at me.
Second, I’m not going to limit things to just my career as a wannabe writer. I have other hobbies and interests and will be on the lookout for cool things that appeal to my geeky nature or really just anything that catches my interest. I will do my best to keep things light when it comes to things like religion and politics. I do have views on both subjects, some of them very strong, but in my experience arguing about those things never accomplishes anything but hurting feelings.
In short, this will become my public journal. A peek into the madness that is being a writer. If there are topics you would like me to weigh in on, feel free to comment and suggest them. If they don’t violate my personal rules I probably will.
Oh yeah, I will still update you on my life as a writer. I just hope there will be something notable to report soon.
I’ve slowly started breaking my bad habits. I gave up smoking, even my beloved pipe. I’ve started getting exercise in the form of walking every day. Now I just need to break the worst habit of all. I need to stop not writing every day. I honestly can’t explain why it’s such a struggle to make myself do something I love so much, but there it is. I need ot force myself to do it every day until not writing feels strange to me.
Over the years I’ve amassed quite a collection of writing accoutrements. Typewriters, computers, smart phones, tablets. Each of them promising to make my life as a writer easier. Each time I find myself going back to my old standby, a good fountain pen and a notebook. Maybe I’m just nostalgic, but I think it’s something more than that. Computers come with myriad distractions built in. Even typewriters make it too easy to spend my time editing what I’ve just written rather than just writing. With a pen, I can just flow. I don’t even edit as I go so much (partly because I have to make an effort to read what I’ve written). Also, a pen and a notebook are infinitely portable and never run out of batteries.
Apologies to all my fans for the recent lack of updates. There hasn’t been much to tell lately because I haven’t been able to do much writing lately. I have been dealing with a back injury and have been in too much pain to think, let alone tell a story. The good news is, I have gotten the pain back to a manageable level and have resumed writing. I promise more frequent updates in the future.
I just love it when I’m writing a story and something happens that even I wasn’t expecting.
I’ve come to realize why I’ve been struggling with the story I was working on. I started it over ten years ago and have been trying to revive it, but the sad truth is, I’m a completely different person than I was then. So good news and bad news. Bad news, it’s going to take me a little more time to finish my first book. Good news, I just started a new story and I’ve finally got my flow back. Almost 2000 words in just a couple hours before I had to stop. I really want to keep going but I know to quit when I start to get punchy.
Well friends, it’s all over but the drinking. I have to confess, I failed miserably. I blame it on a lack of planning. About a week in I realized there were some serious holes in my plot. Once I finally figured them out, I was already well behind the curve. After a few other problems, I was forced to admit I wasn’t going to finish on time. But don’t worry, I learned some valuable lessons. The most important of these was simply the habit of writing every day. Even if I work slowly, if I work every day I will finish in time.
Sorry I haven’t posted lately. I’ve been attempting nanowrimo this year. The bad news that unless a miracle happens, I won’t be finishing my 50,000 words. By the end of the month. The good news is I’ve made great strides toward finishing my first novel.
Just added a little treat to my website www.justinmkelly.info click on writing samples.