clues at the scene

clues at the scene

Friday, February 1, 2013

No Bad Day

This was a salt truck down the hill from my house Wednesday.

The driver was AOK. Water over ice removed all the friction and the truck found the ditch. It isn't the best picture because after making sure the driver had help coming, I didn't want to stand in his field of view to take a picture.

The road is covered with 1/2" of clear ice with water trickling down it.

This guy had a bad day.

It's superbowl weekend and we speak of quarterbacks having short memories. They have to forget a bad execution and go on to the next play.

I think - after struggling with a story for two weeks - this is a little as we need to be. Some sessions are horrible and the writing stinks.  We have to have in focus when we are writing that there is no bad day. We get better from the whole of our work - even the work that we think stinks the next time we see it.

We have no bad days. We have work that requires greater effort at editing or re-write but we stay at it.  We have short memories of our disappointments. We don't look through our rejection letter stack. We look through our story idea and fragment pile, grab one, and work it up.

Just a bit I stumbled across reading E.H. on writing last night: he felt a good day was 400 quality words that added to his current work in progress. He wrote in three drafts before submission and often drafts two and three were pretty extensive re-writes.

That's Hemingway. Guy with the Nobel (1954). 400 solid words a day was productive to him.

He was just like we are now. He stayed with it, edited heavily, and crossed out more words than he added.