How To Write A Book

I’m not exactly sure why I do writing posts, as there is so much information out there from learned professionals, but hey, I need some way to untangle the mess of plots and words and stuffs in my wee cat brain.

I have entirely generic writing habits. No special snowflake insights here, ma’am.

Basically, I pants things until I have a more or less solid grip on my characters and the germs of plot ideas. Then I sit and scribble out options, ideas, possible plot noodles, and occasionally, if Small Brain can face it – some kind of ending. After I’ve had a good squizz at the sheer amount of work waiting for me, I sit down and weep into my coffee.

Like a tragic, doomed something-or-other.

Not a princess, because I don’t think princesses sit at their computers in their ratty pjs drinking cold coffee and waiting for inspiration or a good simulacrum thereof.  (Also, small grubby sprogs don’t tug at their clothes waving lego things at them in the hope that mommy will suddenly remember that she has spawned children, and must therefore feed them occasionally.)

Actually my writing day goes pretty much like this.

First I bribe myself to open the doc. “C’mon Cat,” I say “Just 250 words. Even you can do that. 250 words, and then I won’t tell the world what a horrible failure you are.”

The threat of my loserdom being exposed – on the internet, no less – tends to spur me into at the very least opening my doc and looking at what I last wrote.

Depending on the state of said words, I either need to get a new coffee because the current cold cup has also gone all salty, or I run around the room shrieking with joy at my amazing genius. Then I tap out a few words, and tell myself to stop being such a git and to just bloody get on with it, okay.

For every line I write, I repeat those actions.

Being a writer must be one of the most bi-polar careers on earth.

“My work is brilliant, I shall change not a jot nor tittle omg I suck great hairy donkey bollocks and everything I’ve ever written should be burnt burnt burnt oh wow this is a pretty nifty line look how awesome I am dear god how did I manage to fool someone into repping me what the hell is this tripe?

Etcetera.

Etcetera.

Every time I’m ready to quit and become a secretary, I just have to remind myself that I’m insane.

This technique has helped me write well over four sentences at a time.

For anyone attempting nano, I urge you to try it.

Daily progress:

The Whine Of Tiny Violins: 21 759/50 000

mean things: Making Rain go visit mommy dearest

stuff wot i liked: The door swings open even as I pull my finger away from the intercom. Lily looks smaller, grey, her hair in dry wisps around her face. Instead of frightening and evil – like a witch from the stories – my mother looks old and frail. I swallow.

“Irene,” she says, looking past me. “I felt you come back.”


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cat_hellisen

I write.

2 thoughts on “How To Write A Book”

  1. Being a writer must be one of the most bi-polar careers on earth.

    Excuse me have you been peeking into my brain? Writing must be the only job where my having bi-polar actually qualifies me ( well a bit)and I change my mind every five minutes between ‘I is awesome sauce’ and ‘Why don’t I just chick myself of a bridge’

    And I’m glad I’m not the only one with grubby sprogs with lego things. Although mine tend to shoot bits at me and say ‘Sorry, the hyperturnip cannon went out of control again’ or ‘Mummy must die. Prepare the turniplaser!’

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