Getting Trapped in the Gap

Like a lot of people, I go through spurts of heavy creativity followed by plateaus of blahdom. Either I'm terribly intensive, slaving away on my story and annoyingly stuck in my own head, focused on the world I'm building for Elsbeth and Burning Spirit,...or I'm not. I'm either the crazy chick from The Craft, or I'm the girl next door: someone calm and fun.

The problem is that you can't really get any work done in either situation. If you're girl-next-door (GND), then you're out having coffee and not working at all, and if you're crazy-bitch-from-the-craft (CBFC) you can't be objective about your work and you, my lovely readers, get left behind.

For me, I need to be trapped in the gap between GND and CBFC. I have to operate somewhere in the inbetween or I totally fall apart from either being too wound or not enough.

Seriously. Tears, wine, thinking all the characters are stupid, and then apologizing to the ones that I don't really think that way about,... it all creates an inability to work/write, and my God, my poor husband. He's heard so much about Elsbeth he might as well believe her to be a relative who's going to show up at my door any day now. Lucky for me, he's a writer too, so he gets this...this strange mental place you need to have the map to in order to write the things we write.

But when I'm in the gap, I think about how I can make Burning Spirit the best story for you. I care about how exciting the tale will be to read, and I want to keep you up at night turning the page long after you swore you'd turn off the light. This is where I like to live. Gap Street in Gapville.

Getting trapped in the gap is something I think all creative types must do in order to get anything done and still come out the other side of things a sane and decent person. I remember the mantra of a college professor I had (after telling us that "if you're bored, you're a boring person") who said that the perfect student is the B student.

What he meant was this: The A student only succeeds inside four walls, the C, D, or F student isn't focused enough, but the B student has learned how to create and maintain balance in their life. The B student is rocking the Gap. We should aspire to be A students, we all want to pass the tests after all, but Bs are there to tell us we're on track in life.

So, with that said, I'm going to slip back into my gap and get more edits done on the book, but only after I play outside in the sun.

1 comment:

  1. As I am working more in visual arts I find I like something I've drawn or painted much more a couple of days after I've done it. When I find something I made or wrote years ago I like it when I don't even remember creating the piece but think it's really pleasing, excellent work. Then I know I was in "the gap" at the time I did it. Extremes just don't contribute much. It's the hard, day in, day out persistence that wins in the end.