Saturday, June 4, 2011

The kind of affair that really doesn't hurt anyone

There's nothing quite like falling in love with a new idea.

A lot of times it will happen when you are in the middle of another book. A book that has gone from pure pleasure to write to a kind of muddy slog.

And then a voice will whisper inside of you:  "This book sucks. But your new idea - that would make a wonderful book. It would practically write itself."

Do not give into temptation.  Do not divorce your current book to run off and hastily marry your new idea. Because one day you will wake up and you'll realize you are stuck in the same muddy slog, only now it's with your once shiny new idea.

Does that mean you should give up on your wonderful new idea?

No. But what you should do is make it your affair book.  Yes, sneak off every now and then to write it. Write with passion. Leave when it starts suggesting you need to do the dishes or take out the garbage. Come back to it with presents of energy and excitement and insight.  Repeat as necessary.

Two of the best books I've ever written were not under contract, and I really shouldn't have been writing them. But I snuck out every now and then to meet up with them secretly. And I'm so glad I did.


6 comments:

  1. "Make it your affair book." Love it!

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  2. Thank you! What great advice!

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  3. I love the phrase 'affair book'. It sounds like it should be written on a chaise longue.

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  4. I love that you said not to divorce your current novel, but that it's okay to sneak in other writing. :D It's great advice.

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  5. I've done a little bit of this in the past and I think I'm going to have to give myself permission to have more affairs with books only of course! Great post!

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  6. And then there's geting the naughtyness back in the book you're married to.

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