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Saturday, May 27, 2006

Quit Jacking with my Brain!

I've been trying all day to work on The Book. Really. Instead, I took a nap, played at cleaning the house, played with the kids, played with the dog, read a couple of books I've been needing to read. One of which, Small Town Secrets by Sharon Mignerey, is an absolute must-read. Seriously. And I'm not saying it because it's my job. I'd say, of all the fiction I've read lately, it is definitely on top of the list of well written, engaging stories.

And I really felt like, okay, it's now 10:45 p.m., and I should really work on The Book. But it just didn't feel right. So I dug through my bag o'books purchased at the conference, and came up with Writing the Breakout Novel workbook by Donald Maass. First exercise: Who are your personal heroes? Write down the name of one and why they're a hero.


Am I the only person in the universe who doesn't have a hero? I don't. I have always had a hard time answering this question when asked for those stupid memes and personality test thingys, and I usually end up making up something dumb and trite to avoid the discomfort of saying, "I don't have a hero."

So of course, I had to think about that and how that made me a totally whacked out human being and what psychosis did that mean I had? Decided I was not going to write the Breakout Novel, because I couldn't deal with the weird emotions that led to.

Ended up digging in bag o' books and decided I'd read whatever I pulled out. Which ended up being Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller Now, this is a funny book, because it's been recommended to me a few times, and it's been sitting on my wish list at Barnes and Noble for just about forever. For whatever reason, at the conference, there it was on the table (even though Don Miller was NOT there) at the bookstore, and I said "what the heck." Don't you know, at writing conferences, I have carte blanche to spend what I want, as opposed the to the frugality I tend to have sitting at home, on my laptop, with an entire internet full of books at my purchasing disposal. Probably a good thing. :)

Anyway, what to say about this book. First of all, I personally didn't like his writing style. The man rambles more than I do and gets a little more flowery than I like. However, he had a lot of great points and for that, I highly recommend reading it.

Between all this reading, contemplating, and prayer, God decides it's time for another "chat". One of the main themes in Sharon's book is addiction. The hero is an alcoholic, and there is this incredible scene where he is staring down a beer, ready to drink. You seriously have to read it just for that scene. Anyway, one of the themes in Don's book is self addiction.


Why was it so impactful? Um, I dunno, maybe because I am probably one of the most self addicted people on the planet? Hello? Read my blog much? Mememememememe...

So God and I are working on it. And I think that's partially why the whole getting published thing is getting farther from me at this point. Why, for all intents and purposes, I've given up. Wait, that doesn't sound right. It's not that I've given up, it's just not the driving force in me right now. Selling a book-big deal. Impacting lives-now that's where it's at.

Why can't I work on The Book? Because... well... crap. I sat down and I asked God, "Okay God, what is it that you want me to write? What is the song you want me to breathe?" (Interestingly enough both JSB and Miller talk about breathing God's song). Part of what is confusing me right now is that I write so many different things, which as some of you with writing careers know, is not very marketable. And as God and I were chatting, would you like to know what He said, "I don't care WHAT you write, as long as it's for me."


What happened to "Write The Book."? What happened was that God wanted to see the growth in me that came about as part of this wacky journey of the past few months, and now that I'm in the "okay God, I'll do whatever you say" mode, He is letting me loose. I know there's a catch here somewhere, which is why I know He's doing something with my brain, except I don't get it.

So, given that I don't get it, I said, "God, that's nice, but which, of the multitude of books that I'm working on, have written and could revise, have been requested, would YOU like me to write?" Stats so far are 10 complete, 2 requested, 4 in process. Well, the in process number may not be accurate-I've started several others, but I'm committed to finishing these 4. On one hand, I really feel as though the requested books are a matter of honor-they were requested, and I need to honor that and put them out there. I also think that I could learn much from revising them. But I'm not so sure those are the books I'm supposed to work on. I have this new book I just started at the conference, not The Book, but a fun fiction thing I started playing around with when my brain started to implode from information overload. However, it is a complete departure from anything I've ever written. And, just to throw your mind into the same tailspin I'm in, I don't feel like any of them are really my voice. Whatever that means. After all these years, I'm still not convinced I know what that means. I do know that if you were to read one of my books and read my blog, I don't think you'd think they were written by the same person. Frankly, I don't think you could read most of my books and think they were written by the same person if you read more than one or two, with a couple of exceptions.

So what does this all mean? I DON'T KNOW!!!! Except that my brain is getting really messed up and now my head hurts.

I'm going to go take comfort in That Man and maybe tomorrow I'll be less discombobulated and will post graduation pictures.

Peace be the journey people. Don't let it mess with your head.


Heather Diane Tipton said...

You know, Danica... I soooo love watching what God is doing in you. It's really cool to see.

as to blue like jazz.. I have it, But haven't read it. Camy thinks that his voice is very similar to mine... guess that would be the whole rambley part. LOL

Danica/Dream said...

Lovely. You like watching torture.

As for BLJ, he's much more of a rambler than you.