we were having coffee with a friend the other day and while I mostly kicked back and enjoyed the scenery, at one point the friend asked about how my literary projects were going, to which I replied about the difficulty I have in finishing them.
About how starting is easy and fun but to stick with them – or to stick with one – especially something aspiring to be a novel or at least novel length – is another animal altogether (another animal!I and after fumbling for an answer as to why this was I got a little spanking and a scolding and an order that I would pick one and stay with it until it was finished – and to absolutely not start anything new until then.
We then parted ways so I didn’t have a chance to introduce the tardy question: which one? So on return I took a deep breath and performed a sort of customized game of random selection or a customized method of elimination, confining the game to those which had gone to an arbitrarily-set progress at least as far as length in words – I did not take into account whether or not they contained sections that sucked or even sections I found and still find myself surprised that I actually wrote those not-so-bad sections because such is the case with all of them.
As the customized process of random elimination-selection slimmed the field I took another deep breath and reintroduced myself to a tale that was not from these most recent days and I promised to stay with it until we could both agree it was an actual finished work. I mainly want to make it public that our reunification was 3 days ago and I’ve so far honored my commitment. Haven’t touched another document since then – opened a few new pages of course for sketching – but so far so good. However – even after these few three days I could more easily answer why it is difficult to finish a work – especially a long thing.
To identify a thread that runs through all the causes or perils – probably comes down to being taken out of the work – and once pulled or taken out, to get back into it – that’s damn hard to do. Don’t know why. Just that it is. And the hazards that represent potential snuffers of projects are numerous. One is the temptation of many choices. I like having many choices. On the other hand there is an attraction to settling in for a long haul in one world. And I will predict that if the idea of multiple choices is transferred into the one Thing, that might ease the temptation to pull out the long list of unfinished works and select one to work on for that day.
That’s pretty much the news from over here for now.