I went back to the library today to return books that I checked out and to check out some new ones. I checked out five different books, all on the same subject, for half a chapter of my new manuscript that I need to get written. Why? Because this chapter includes sailing and I’ve never sailed before in my life. I’ve kayaked. I love kayaking. But I do not know how to work a sailboat. This should be fun.
Also, I checked out three other books that I want to read and now I am forced to decide whether I want to be a responsible writer and get to work finishing my chapter or if I want to be self-indulgent and read. I’m pretty sure I’m going to go with self-indulgent, since I’ve already spent money on a huge cookie that I did not need.
And I’ve already eaten it.
Life is hard.
Today, I was feeling a little better, so I took a trip to the library. I picked up two books on writing proposals and query letters. I’ve been scribbling out ideas, but I still need some guidance on structure and content. Granted, I know that how-to books can only take you so far. A lot of it has to come from inside of you (that sounds so profound, doesn’t it?). A few years ago, when I first realized that I wanted to be an author, I read On Writing by Stephen King. He said that one of the worst mistakes that an aspiring author can make is taking a writing class. On her website, Meg Cabot says the same thing. Well, I ignored their words of wisdom. I took three writing classes throughout the course of college and graduate school.
I hated them. Well, technically, I hated two of them. Poetry was pretty okay. Except for this really creepy guy with a demonic gargoyle tattooed on his wrist, but you know, to each their own. Anyway, I enjoyed poetry because A) I really suck at poetry and it was interesting to learn and B) I don’t want to be a poet.
But the other classes? Horrible. Though you know, the professors may have had something to do with that. Without a gifted instructor who genuinely cares about their students and wants to help them succeed, any class is going to be horrible. One of my teachers actually told us that writing was a waste of time, none of us would ever get anywhere with it, and that we should just give up now.
Great encouragement, right?
Anyway, along with those books on how to write query letters, I also picked up a few books for my new manuscript. Perusing through the aisles reminded me of all the times I’d visited libraries for research papers and projects throughout my six years of higher education. May I just say it is a lot more fun doing research for something you actually want to write rather than something you are told you have to write or else you fail.
Well, that’s about all I have for tonight. I’m gonna go microwave myself some dinner. Good night!