Sunday, April 08, 2007


... by Canada Council. Turns out I'm not the only one, but it still hurts. I thought I had a good project, appropriate samples of work, a good resume, etc. etc. But they still said no.

I'll show them, I thought - after a couple of days ineffective sulking. So I can't cut my work week down to five - or even four days - like a lot of other working stiffs. So I'll quit almost everything else to get this novel moving, and so I can start on the next one which won't let go of me.

My goal is to write 1,000 words every second day; the intervening day I have to go in and nip and tuck what I wrote the previous day. The idea being that once I'm in there it will be hard not to just keep going. And it works. Since April 1 which was my clear the desk and really get down to it date - I've written 11,000. Sure, not very good ones. Some days it's like dragging a dead weight up a steep flight of stairs.

But I know that any words on the page are better than none, and you can't make them better if they're not there to start with.

But I've fallen out of love with the story - perhaps not fatally, but let's say the relationship has gone lukewarm. And just like real life, if you act like you love tapioca or your boss, you have a better chance of getting along with them than if you don't pretend. So I may be rejected by Canada Council - and in good company. But right now I'm not dumping anyone - even if they're only in my head and on the page, and don't really exist.

Inside my April folder on my desktop is a journal - a day by day account of how many words I wrote - how hard or easy they were, the file name, brief notes on where I might go next, or later. Reading the journal or writing in it does not count, but at least it might keep me honest.

Speaking of which - it's an even day and I've got 1,000 words to find somewhere and stick on the page, anywhere they will fit.

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