Thursday, November 10, 2005

Writing a Novel is...

If someone has the vaccine against the Writing Procrastination Flu, please come to my house, where the pandemic is in full force.

No, I'm not kidding.

The hurricane got me so sidetracked, that I lost momentum. Today, things are brewing in my head, but I still avoid the actual page work.

Part of my dilly-dallying consisted of a web search using the phrase, "Writing a novel is." Just for your enjoyment, I offer you some of the results:

*Writing a novel is actually searching for victims. As I write I keep looking for casualties. The stories uncover the casualties.
John Irving

*Writing a novel is like making love, but it's also like having a tooth pulled. Pleasure and pain. Sometimes it's like making love while having a tooth pulled.
Dean Koontz

*Writing a novel is easy. Writing a good novel is hard.
Randy Ingermanson

*Writing a novel is like beginning an investigation, and you don't quite know where that investigation will take you.
Ian McEwan

*Writing a novel is a little like training with weights. And writing short stories is the sprint you get to have without them.
Pam Lewis

*Writing a novel is like solving a puzzle: you just have to keep at it till it’s done, but it feels so good when you get there.
Elizabeth Inness-Brown

*Writing a novel is like swimming through the sea.
John Fowles

*Writing a novel is like taking a long trip.
Anne Tyler

*Writing a novel is kind of like building the Taj Mahal, in the dark, by hand.
Nalo Hopkinson

*Writing a novel is the most difficult thing I have done in my entire life.
Shree Ghatage

*Writing a novel is more like a marriage; you live with it every day, you work at it.
Mary Morris

*Writing a novel is like walking across the country: I've got my map in front of me, know where to change freeways... I don't necessarily know exactly how the road will twist and turn along the way, but at least I know which cities I'll be passing through next.
Adam Cadre

*Writing a novel is an act of egotistical self-assertion.
Philip Kerr

*Writing a novel is like driving a car with a flat tire. You have to see which way it pulls.
Jennifer Wasilko Haigh

*Writing a novel is sort of a way to fix things.
Barry Siegel

*Writing a novel is like jumping off the Eiffel Tower. It’s a long fall, and you need to know where you’re going to land.
Michael Byers

*Writing a novel is much like scaling a mountain. The task is fierce, with many unexpected turns, near tragedies, frustrating standstills, and miles of uphill sluggin'.
Shane Wiebe

*Writing a novel is like carrying a very large, heavy suitcase in your brain.
Claudia Casper

*Writing a novel is a most peculiar business.
Natasha Cooper

*Writing a novel is like driving a car at night. You can see only as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.
E.L. Doctorow

*Writing a novel is a stormy thing
Douglas Clegg

*Writing a novel is mostly pure pleasure
David Ignatius

*Writing a novel is like telling a long lie to a psychiatrist.
Ernest Hebert

*Writing a novel is like navigating in the open sea.
Tarun J. Tejpal

*Writing a novel is one of the biggest, craziest, most mathematically unsound bets one can make.
Pete Hautman

*Writing a novel is a lot like playing God.
Darline Dorce-Coupet

*Writing a novel is a lot like a striptease -- there has to be a slow unveiling of key pieces of information.
Tom Grace

*Writing a novel is like potato salad; everybody has a different recipe.
Dennis Lehane

*Writing a novel is like building a castle and in some cases, people build the things too big and put too much crap in them.
Steven Francis Murphy

*Writing a novel is quite stupid work.
Zadie Smith

*Writing a novel is the very finest thing a person can do.
Irving D. Yalom, M.D.


michael snyder said...

Great post. My favorite is the Hebert quote about telling a long lie...

Thanks for sharing.


PS: As far as the antidote...don't know. Some things that work for me:
-Listen to a great book on tape
-Stop writing, no matter what
-Keep writing, no matter what
-Transcribe a few paragraphs of my favorite author
-Write a short story, using a different cast of characters, to work out whatever has me baffled on the novel (a theme or spiritual element or specific conflict).
-Hit myself with a hammer

Mirtika said...

Those are good suggestions, Mike. One I have used was the "transcribing" of a fave author. I may need to dig up a nice story to do just that.

One of my very fave Writing Is quotes is the one about building the castle and putting too much crap in it. CRACKED ME UP! And it's true.

Thanks for visiting!