Friday, February 20, 2009


So, I get to a point in the creative process where I need to kick my own ass into gear. Give myself a creative incentive. Winter kills me creatively. There's just nothing romantic about banks of snow, cold drifts, ice dams, frozen pipes and empty oil tanks. These things, and many more, kill my creativity.

I get depressed. Clinically. Not "the blues" as Mom would call them. I'm talking about that ugly dark feeling, like you've swallowed a Stephen King novel and it's spreading inside of you. Taking over.

It's the end of February. I get to my birthday, on March 4th, and I always start to see better, emotionally. Winter is not over. I know this. But March 4th has always been that benchmark I always wait for, because it means in a month come the rains and the snow recedes and the temperature rises.

I can stand rainy days. I actually love rainy days. Ask Corrine.

But, today, February 20, I am giving myself a kick. In. The. Ass.

I designed the cover of my new novel, before the novel is finished. This sounds like putting the cart before the horse, but it isn't. And you probably already know where I'm going with this.

By designing it, and publishing it here, I'm throwing down the gauntlet. I'm saying, well, now I HAVE to finish it. I'm shaming myself into doing it.

Am I afraid I won't otherwise? Sort of. I have a love-hate relationship with my writing. I tend to start something and hate it before it's even out of the rough draft. Which is cruel. It's like throwing out a cake when you've just put the batter in the pan. How will you know it's any good unless you wait?

I have not given myself a deadline, but I'm pushing for the end of August, just like two years ago with Surfacing (the cover of which I also printed out before I was done with the book, and pinned it to my office wall).

So now I'm on the clock.

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