I’ve been reading this book and thinking, as I often do, “I wish I could write like Julian Barnes.” Or, better yet, and to be more accurate, “If only I could write like Julian Barnes.”
I hate the if onlys. They get us nowhere. And yet, there they are, like errant needle sticks: Is this the right vein? No? How about this one?
I’ve been traveling these last 2 weeks, and I’ve unexpectedly gotten a lot of work done. This is a picture of what my notes used to look like. I’ve been lugging them (and more) around for at least a year. Now they’re in the trash at the airport. Decisions have been made. Moving forward, trusting myself a little more.
Two weeks ago, for the first time in eons, I printed out my entire manuscript and I’ve lugged it with me everywhere. I’ve made myself handwrite everything; if I needed to find a scene, I couldn’t hit the “search” button, I had to remember where in the hell it was; I’ve trusted every single instinct for what stays and what goes; I’ve let my mind wander down it’s paths instead of trying to hang onto the wheel so goddamned tight.
I am not Julian Barnes.
Today I saw this discussion (mentor-project.html) between 2 golfers: Ben Crenshaw and Jonathan Vegas. Watch it. Imagine they’re writers instead of golfers.
Do you trust your game?