May 29, 2009

Are Writers Crazy?

Well, my critique group has had a lot of laughs, and a very lively discussion, about the idea that writers are crazy. Our group's self-imposed 3 manuscripts in 3 weeks deadline has convinced us that craziness does lurk underneath. It has further confirmed, however, that manuscripts cannot be written in a day/week/month. Sure, you may have a good gem of an idea or a great outline, or sketchy personality traits of the protagonist. But a well-written, ready-to-submit manuscript? Definitely not. Part of the craziness for a writer is listening to all the voices in your head, and determining which one is book-worthy. Now, voices in the head are not always a positive thing, but for writers, it's our profession. These voices make us put pen to paper (or fingers on the keyboard) and write. What do a French Poodle, a kangaroo, a dog that reads and Teddy Roosevelt have in common? They have all been speaking to me these last two weeks. Crazy? Perhaps. These voices competed for attention in my already cluttered head. But as a result, I have finished two magazine articles and an outline for another book. Listen to those voices - they may just give you the idea for your next book.

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