The Ironic Balance

Monday, June 09, 2008
By Valerie Fentress

As I sit here trying to pull together the words for my next project and a proposal for an agent, I find myself stumped. There is a part of me that wants to plan everything out. Plan each day, plan each chapter, plan each character hiccup. But all this planning, drive, and goals seem to be holding my creativity back.

I can’t help but laugh at all the "How to write ________" books, and how there is almost a formula and template that must be followed in order to be published. Which completely contradicts the art and creativity of writing.

True this is more a venting of my current frustrations, but it affects all of us from time to time. We listen to Podcasts, blogs, agents, and workshops that tell us color inside the lines, while at the same time the market wants creative explosions that ignore and stretch the lines.

I guess part of me wants to burn my bra and rebel against "The Man", but publishing and writing is just one of those tricky things that takes a combination of structured creativity. The ratio of structure to creativity is supposed to ebb and flow with each project, so don’t be afraid of a bumpy ride. Just because things aren’t coming easy this time around doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel. It’s just another wave to ride out in order to turn that grain of sand of an idea into a pearl.

Good luck to us all :)


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