Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Midweek Crisis

It started when I was writing Her Last Night of Innocence, and the Midweek Crisis has become a bit of a phenomenon with me now. This is how the first half of my week goes.

Monday - get home from school run, look around for work avoidance excuses, clean floor, make toast, sort laundry, trail upstairs and put music on. Open ms document. Turn music up. Write.

Tuesday - come home from school run, ignore kitchen squalor and ironing pile. Race upstairs. Open document. Write.

Wednesday - Wake up thinking about book. Snap at children at drop of a towel in pre-school run madness. Come home feeling guilty and bad-tempered. Go upstairs. Try to write. Fail spectacularly. Read back over Tuesday's enthusiastic outpouring and feel jaw drop with horror at how wrong it all is. Open up new document, entitled 'Real, Proper Actual Book This Time, Not False Start no 572' or something similar and write 4 sentences on it. Stop writing. Panic. Open up another new document entitled 'Outline no.48' and begin yet another summing up of Facts, this time adding in the mini-epiphany which will alter the course of the plot completely. Or not. Hyperventilate. Practise stress-managment in the form of internet 'research'. Make tea. Search house for chocolate. Re-read everything and realise Tuesday's version was, in fact, better. Apart from wrongness. Open up new document... Repeat in a loop until school pick up time.

Why? What is it about Wednesdays? If this goes on much longer I'm going to lobby my MP to get them abolished.


Maisey said...

Aww....sorry, India. It's rough to try and get it 'all' done and Wednesday seems like a reasonable time to have it catch up with you. (dinner? Again? you had it last night!)

hmm...maybe you need a Wednesday treat... (wine...chocolate...a shirtless serving boy) might make it all less painful.

Kaz19 said...

Oh my God, you poor thing? How are you coping?
I feel all emotional today anyway, after listening to the recording of the soldier leaving his marriage proposal on the wrong answer phone machine!!! Has anyone else heard it?
But please India don't listen to it, us girlies in the office listened to it this afternoon, and we all burst into tears.
What are we like? We're all suckers for an emotional man.
xx Karen

Catherine J said...

Sorry you've had a rubbish Wednesday. I'm sure things will imporve - improve even! If Maisey could wave her magic wand they'd definitely imporve.

All the best. Cx

Kate Hewitt said...

I hear you. At least you recognise i, though. I've come to realise whenever I hit 15-20k in a book I panic, realise it doesn't work and is never going to work, and start a different book. Then I panic all the more and go back to the first one and try to salvage it. What a process!

Morton S Gray said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Morton S Gray said...

Hi India,

Maybe it's catching. I've just come off the phone to Ellie telling her I've gone all funny about my WIP and that she is to talk to me severely when we go cafe writing tomorrow morning.

Writing avoidance is my forte too, I have a sparkling double oven and microwave!

Here's hoping Thursday is better for both of us. Mx

India said...

Oh yes Maisey (nods in agreeing, self-pitying kind of way) a treat or three might work. Could you send over the shirtless serving boy when you're done with him? You're an angel. xxx (Is it nearly the weekend?)

Karen, thanks SO MUCH for telling me about that - I did google and listen, because it's so unbelievably appropriate for the bit of book I'm writing, you have no idea! (Though you will when it comes out, if it gets that far...) Obviously my man is a bit older than 18, and slightly less heart-on-sleeve. But the emotions are pretty much the same. You must be a mind reader!

*snurk* catherine. Imperve, even...

Kate, I know. And yet recognising it somehow doesn't help much at the time, does it? I suppose I don't actually have physical panic attacks any more (Hell-o Taken for Revenge, Bedded for Pleasure...) and am much more philosophical about it, but I wish the need for philosophy was removed, and I could just hit the part where I write in a calm, orderly, beginning-to-end way. Like a sane person.

Thanks for sharing your Wednesday woes Morton. Look on the bright side though, at least you have a clean oven and microwave, and coffee/writing with Ellie to look forward to! (Me - filthy kitchen, no life.) Hope tomorrow the ms is back on track - is it the historical?

Morton S Gray said...

Hi India,
No it's the New Voices one - Tanner and Rosie, which if I stop panic attack is actually coming on very nicely. Let's ban Wednesday's and enjoy writing. Mx

Sally Clements said...

my monday and tuesday is very similar, India. But on Wednesdays I have the added 'where's my swimming stuff?' and 'I think I'm playing a match' and its treat day? didn't you go to the shop and get me a treat? scenario when I wake up, and its all downhill from then on. Sigh...

ros said...

India, I think the problem is that sane people don't become writers. So I am afraid you are doomed to a life of craziness and creativity. Embrace the panic! Or just eat more chocolate. ;)

Over here, I'm just about all panicked out as everyone else seems to be hearing about their So You Think You Can Write entries and I haven't heard a thing. I literally have no fingernails left.

India said...

Oh, I like that one lots Morton. Glad to hear it's progressing. Where you up to with it?

Sally - I feel your pain. Wednesday is also 'sandwich day' here, when all 3 need packed lunches. There must be something about scrabbling around in the back of the fridge and scraping mould of bread that kills my creativity. Adding swimming into the mix would finish me off altogether.
(But if it's officially treat day in your house, you could probably get away with taking up Maisey's suggestion...)

Oh Ros, I fear you're right. Applying a businesslike, 9-5 approach to writing isn't really going to work, is it? (Applying a businesslike approach to anything is always a stretch for me) I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you and your submission - keep us posted!!

Abby Green said...

Wednesday was always my least favourite day - in school it was always double maths, double games and double science, shudder shudder. So I'm with you on getting them abolished. LOVE Thursdays.
x Abby

Morton S Gray said...

Hi India,

I have full plot, chapter breakdown and the start (at least) of most chapters. I just need to buckle down and edit what I have and write what I haven't. It feels there in my head so just need to keep going.

Ellie and I had fun in the Ginger Pig in Worcester - writing, laughing and latte! Mx

India said...

Oooh yes Abby, Wednesday was always games afternoon in my school too. Vile. Thursdays good though. (Fridays better...)

Morton, that's so positive - and 'edit what you have got, write what you haven't' sounds so simple! Will try to think of it that way as I open my ms in a minute. I googled the Ginger Pig and wished I hadn't as I then felt a) jealous b) hungry. Glad you had a lovely time!

Ellie Swoop said...

Good things happen at The Ginger Pig xx

Serenity said...

Lol yes Wednesday are always difficult, the weekend's still not in sight and there seems so far to go! It's odd how we all seem to hit that point in a book where we think: where did it all go wrong! This is a nightmare! I'm never going to be able to finish this! You must know more than me, does it get easier with time? It doesn't sound like it does! I guess the answer is to keep writing and get through the bad stuff and hopefully write through to the other side. Then go back and delete all the crap! Lol. A convoluted way to do it but hey, whatever gets the job done.

India said...

Ellie, I bet they do. *wistful sigh* Do they sometimes come in the form of coffee and walnut cake?

Serenity, I hit the 'where did it all go wrong' stage on about page 3 - I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. You're absolutely right about it not getting easier (I'd say it gets harder, actually, for all sorts of reasons that I might post about one day) and also that the only thing you can do is write on through it. And re-write, and write again... The good news is that we're not alone!