Listen to Pilot Light

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

A single focus for an eclectic person

I read the blogs of other writers and I am often impressed that they seem able to write a book, just one book, and stay with it to the end before starting another. If that is the sign of a writing discipline, then it is one I lack.

Not that I lack focus, exactly. I can sit down at my desk and work on a story, one story, until I look up and notice that the say disappeared somewhere (days do that to me a lot). I can even be interrupted, stopping to answer the door or make lunch or play with the dog, and get back to the task.

What I am talking about is lacking the kind of focus that means every day I sit down and work on the same story. I can go days in that mode, but then wake from a lucid dream (or something) with another idea in my head. It could be an idea on how to fix a story I previously shelved, or a new story altogether.

And I, of course, feel compelled to get it down. Some of it, at least.

It isn't that I think this is the best way to work, but it seems to be part of me. And not an occasional part, either. I almost always have several stories in the works. So when people ask, "What are you writing?" my answer tends to be more of a catalog than it ought to be.

I have no idea if this tendency makes my writing better or worse, but I do know that it plays hell with my "to-do" list. It ebbs and flows like some erratic tidal system. But the writing is enjoyable, and that is the important thing.