|Love of Books, by Jiri Hodan|
In the beginning, I'm taken over by the euphoria of love. The idea pops in my head, and I am infatuated. Each day I wake up thinking about it, wondering how I can get through the other parts of my day to spend more time with it. Like any new relationship, it's exciting and makes me feel all gooey inside.
Most projects make it past this point.
The First Fight
At some point, you have your first fight. He wants to go to his mother's for the holidays, but you've already promised your family you'd come there. Or, in the case of writing, a pivotal paragraph you need to sing is whimpering.
The love is still there, but the real work is beginning. For this piece/relationship to mean something, you have to commit to it. Remember what made you fall in love in the beginning.
If you can't remember, this piece may need to be put away for later so you can move onto the newest infatuation in your head.
Or, in the writing world, editing. No matter how great the project, it needs some fixes along the way. Somewhere in the building process, there's room for improvement. The initial love has grown into something deeper. Hopefully, it's strong enough to survive finding a few flaws.
If you survive finetuning, the odds are in your favor.
Love. Check. Survived some bumps in the road. Check. Now it's time to commit knowing full well that nothing's perfect. There's no backing away once you've put in this amount of time and energy. You have to trust it, believe in it wholeheartedly.
But like any relationship, sometimes you don't get past the first spark or the first fight. You have to know yourself and trust your heart and instincts. And you have to be careful not to stray to the next pretty thing/thought.
Of course, it's okay to dream up new ideas and take notes. You just can't act on all of them at the same time. *wink*
I recently ran across this quote:
You have to walk carefully in the beginning of love; the running across fields into your lover's arms can only come later when you're sure they won't laugh if you trip.
Jonathan Carroll, "Outside the Dog Museum"
Remember, pace don't race. Yes, the euphoria will give you a great headstart. But it's the sweat and tears that make it truly special.
Of course, I'll be rereading this when I have my next fight with my WIP.
When you doubt your relationship with your work in progress, where do you turn?