The Book

typewriter-chapter-one1

I am writing a book.

I enjoy writing fiction, some of you may have read the bits and bobs I’ve posted here in the past, but I’ve no real idea if it’s rubbish or not. I’ve read some of it and it seems ok to me, although every time I re-read them I can’t help but think of ways to tighten up the language and make things flow better.

It’s one thing writing short blog posts though, quite another to write a book. What the hell do I know about writing a book? In an effort to answer that question I once bought a book called “How to write your first novel”. I should probably read it at some point. In saying that, I’ve a sense that a book needs characters and that they will develop and be discovered by the reader over the course of the story. I know a book needs a plot, a reason that binds all the strands of the book together. I know a book needs motifs, tone, and attitude. Beyond that, I don’t know how to write a book.

I enjoy writing fiction even though I’ve not managed to distance it from myself, to push it away to become a story that anyone can relate to. Instead anything I write is still to close to being me and I know that will constrain the characters. I don’t want to lose my voice completely but I still read what I write and hear ‘me’, not the voices of the people I’m writing.

I’ve been writing the book for some time. I may never finish it, others may never read it, but now and then I take a notion and write some more. On a given day I’ll read all the pieces together and rework them again. And again. And again. Each edit changing the voice, the direction, the pace.

I am writing a book.

I know what type of book I don’t want it to be and which traps I don’t want to fall into, just as I know what type of book I hope it might be, and unbounded expectations of how it might be received. I pause and daydream of life as a writer. Away from the 9 to 5, free to indulge myself, I imagine what I’ll learn about writing, about myself. Perhaps my book will be made into a movie!

Moments later reality floods in and I realise that whilst I am writing a book, I’ve never done it before and so I’ve no frame of reference to tell if it’s any good or not. I may be writing the worst book in the world but then, that’s not really the point.

I am writing a book that will never published. I am aware of this but unmoved by the fact.

I am writing a book for myself. It is not my story but merely an outlet, a way to give myself some direction and focus. It’s an act of distraction, of meditation and contemplation. A way of getting outside of me for a short space of time.

I am writing a book.

I figure if I say it often enough it might actually work out that way.

I am writing a book.

 

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2 Comments

  • I take it that you are writing a book!!

  • Kindred sprit here Gordon! Looking forward to following your progress.

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