WIPagge… WIPagge is wot bwings us togeder tooday. And wen it's Wuv Twue Wuv… Okay hold on a minute.
How do we know it's really TWUE WUV?
I always seem to have a love / hate relationship with my current WIP. When I get that shiny new idea, I can’t get to my computer fast enough to write the darn thing before it falls out of my brain. But at some unlucky point, I start to loathe my work in progress. And not just loathe, but despise it. I refuse to bow down to the Queen of slime, the Queen of filth, the Queen of Putrescence. I all out hate it. So much so, that I want to run after it yelling my name is Jamie Krakover, you killed my freedom, prepare to die. And then I want to duel it to the death (and the pain).
Recently I tried to understand how I went from a place where I tell my manuscript “As you wish” to one where I’m being forced to say “man and wife”. Because I hit that point where I feel like I’ve been forced into a marriage with a WIP I can’t stand. And it was around that time that I realized that my WIPs often mirror events in my life.
Of course it’s not as literal as the everyday mundane things that are going on in my life, but when I went back and truly looked at my work and tore it apart, I realized there were a lot of similarities. The same kinds of feelings and stresses I was having, were projected onto the characters in my book. And it was no wonder I hated my WIP. I’d had a hard enough time living those stresses in real life, now I was reliving them through my characters and hadn’t even realized it.
So how do you keep plowing through when you can’t stand your book? The same way you do in life. You keep writing and writing and all the while you keep a few things in mind. First, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. You will get there. It’s just a matter of time. And yes you'll face obstacles but you will tackle them with flying color (I know you can!) Second, all, yes I mean ALL, first drafts are crap. Let yourself write the crap, you can fix it later. I know I work better with words on the page. I’d take crappy words over a blank page any day. You can fix crappy words, you can't fix a blank page. And third, know your characters are depending on you. Just like in real life when people rely on you, your characters need you to finish telling their story. You owe it to them.
Yes, it’s definitely a lot of work, but it’s worth it when you can finally type those final words “The End”. Because, if you never get there, you’ll be like the man in black, just waiting for this WIP to fall to its death.