Sunday, November 24, 2013

Nov 23 productivity report

The writing is getting tough.  I am a little ahead in my numbers but I didn't write much yesterday or today.  Tomorrow, I will kill at least two main characters and the story is going to get grim fast.  I wonder how I am at writing bleak stuff?
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Jeff Vandermeer writes about completing a book in two months.
 I think you’d also have to factor in that as a writer in your twenties and, to some extent your thirties, you are still getting comfortable with your writing. You don’t know how to do a lot of things and so some of your time is spent puzzling out how the pieces fit together, how this or that technique works, why this doesn’t, etc.
Now that I don’t have a full-time job and am approaching the age of forty, two things have happened: (1) I can put more of the full force of my attention into a novel or short story more intensely over a short period of time and (2) I’m much more relaxed and as a result my rough drafts tend to be more complete than in the past; I still do a ton of rewriting, revision, and line editing, but I find that more of the initial vision in my head is in the draft right away.

Sci Am on Creativity and Mental Illness (again) 

Apparently, writers have the greatest rate of mental illness and perhaps it powers their efforts:
Jamison concludes that the manic phase of bipolar disorder infuses the writer with furious energy and limitless stamina. The author foregoes sleep, is driven to take daring risks, expands their imagination and embraces grandiose thinking.
The crash of depression ending the manic phase immerses the writer in the depths of human suffering. This infuses poets and writers with the most monumental and profound dimensions of human experiences, moving them to contemplate the meaning of life, confront the certainty of death, and struggle against the agony of despair to survive adversity.
Am I happy that I don't seem to suffer from this kind of illness or upset that it means my potential is limited?  If I can be one and then the other, ...nah, no diminishing of the severity of mental illness here.

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