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Wet Noodle Posse | Blog

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

A FABLE, AN OXYMORON OR JUST A TALL TALE? By Guest Blogger Jennifer St. Giles


No, you didn’t read that incorrectly. Yes, you are in the right blog. The subject in question as I struggle to keep my eyes open and make coherent sentences is A Writer’s Health. My first reaction to such an oxymoron is to laugh. I mean really, for a writer to have real health would imply that he/she had a stable, rational, and only moderately stress inducing occupation. That will never be the case in the Wild Wild World of Publishing. One minute you’re on a bestseller list, the next minute you can’t sell a book. Then when you finally do set a hard deadline for a book, Murphy’s Law and every obnoxious goal destroying imp crawls out of the woodwork and conspires against you.


You think you’re going to set regular working hours where everyone respects that a creative mind if not genius is at work.
You think you’re going to eat healthy, small, but frequent meals to keep nutrients and energy in your body for maximum brain power.
You think you’re going to take five to ten minute breaks every hour to stretch your muscles and get your blood flowing.
You think you’re going to have a set exercise time to release all of those knots of tension.
You think you’re going to pace yourself perfectly so every day is pleasant, ordered, and productive.


But that rarely ever happens because oft times Writing is a Fabled Quest that can be best expressed by Joe Darion’s lyric for Don Quixote’s unforgettable song in Man of La Mancha.

To dream ... the impossible dream ...

To fight ... the unbeatable foe ...

To bear ... with unbearable sorrow ...

To run ... where the brave dare not go ...

To right ... the unrightable wrong ...

To love ... pure and chaste from afar ...

To try ... when your arms are too weary ...

To reach ... the unreachable star ...

This is my quest, to follow that star ...

No matter how hopeless, no matter how far ...

To fight for the right, without question or pause ...

To be willing to march into Hell, for a Heavenly cause ...

And I know if I'll only be true, to this glorious quest,

That my heart will lie will lie peaceful and calm, when I'm laid to my rest ...

And the world will be better for this:

That one man, scorned and covered with scars,

Still strove, with his last ounce of courage,

To reach ... the unreachable star ...


So when I hear stories of writers that have perfectly normal schedule with a lucrative career, who always diet right, exercise three times a week, have time for tennis or golf, and scrap book on the weekends after they’ve gone shopping or white water rafting with their five kids, I file that story away along with Pecos Bill taming the west while riding a twister.


Because in truth one can never truly harness creativity as one does a plow horse and writing is all about creativity. So a healthy writer realizes this and does what he/she can to minimize the fall out. There will always be the crazy rush and the deadline hell.


Currently that is where I am at, working on Bride of the Wolf with a Blind hero chained in the dungeon and a heroine in the clutches of a vampire bent on tearing apart her soul. I haven’t figured out how who will save who yet, but I’ll get there. Just remember that in all the craziness there are moments when a writer can sit back, relax. and enjoy the rewards of a story well told.

Happy Reading and I hope that you found a glimmer of advice in this rambling. And I invite you to check out my paranormal Shadowmen Series. Touch A Dark Wolf, Book 1. Lure of the Wolf, Book 2, Kiss of Darkness, Book 3 Coming 4/09. Bride of the Wolf Book 4. Coming 5/09.
www.jenniferstgiles.com I also have some great gothics on the shelf, so check them out, too.

Thank you for letting me share.
Jennifer St. Giles

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10 Comments:

At 7:48 AM, Blogger Mo H said...

Welcome to the Wet Noodle Posse, Jennifer! I, for one, am hooked by the blurb you shared about your blind hero and heroine's predicament in Bride of the Wolf.

 
At 8:39 AM, Blogger Diane Gaston said...

Hi, Jennifer!
It is so good to see you here!
Your point is well-taken...it is hard to do all this healthy stuff!! And it is hard to write.
Of course if what you write is about blind heroes chained in the dungeon and heroines in the clutches of a vampire bent on tearing apart her soul, then it makes writing even harder!
Seriously, sounds like a truly unique and exciting book! Way to go, Jennifer!

 
At 8:44 AM, Blogger Jennifer St. Giles said...

LOL Thank Mo h. and Diane. Good to see yo both here. And as for the blurb. Well, I hope, I'm doing the book justice.
Right now I'm praying Please don't let this suck. Because every writer sometimes thinks oh this sucks This isn't what I want to happen at all.
LOL
Hugs
Jennifer

 
At 9:21 AM, Blogger Louisa Cornell said...

Hey, Jennifer, I had to laugh at your set of things we PROMISE we are going to do .... and never do. My CPs and I are constantly setting up schedules and plans only to have life blow them out of the water!

I LOVE The Impossible Dream from Man of La Mancha, but I never really thought about it in a writing context, so thank you!

Love your gothics, by the way, (my current WIP is a Regency gothic.) and I will definitely check out the Wolf series. That blurb is terrific!

 
At 9:47 AM, Blogger Jennifer St. Giles said...

Louisa,
Glad to know I'm not the only one life blows out of the water.
And yes writing is like the impossible dream, but never never giving up is the key and it happens.
Thanks for loving the gothics! Keep me posted on yours and let me know what you think about my Shadowmen.
Happy Questing
Jennifer

 
At 12:02 PM, Blogger janegeorge said...

Welcome Jennifer!

I enjoyed the workshop you did at National a few years ago. Atlanta, I think.

And omigosh, Man of La Mancha just brought back a slew of childhood dinner theater memories.

EB White said, "Writing is hard work and bad for the health."

As much as I love and respect Mr. White, I'm off to eat my flax flakes and do my ab crunchies on the exercise ball.

 
At 3:41 PM, Blogger Theresa Ragan said...

There will always be the crazy rush and the deadline hell.

And yet so many authors keep doing it again and again and again. It must be like having a baby...you forget about all the pain after a while.

Thanks for coming and sharing, Jennifer. Your book with the blind hero sounds very intriguing!

Oh, and I LOVE that song The Impossible Dream!!! Gave me chills just reading it...:)

 
At 5:20 PM, Blogger janegeorge said...

Just wanted to add that watching movies helps me to keep tilting at those windmills when energy starts to flag. Somehow a story in a different media form will jog my writing.

I have favorites I return to:

When I feel like I need to re-invent myself or my work I'll watch Sliding Doors.

When I'm sick I always watch You've Got Mail.

For that HEA zing it's Pride & Prejudice.

And my latest feel-good movie is Penelope.

There's more, but you get the idea. :-)

 
At 5:21 PM, Blogger Jennifer St. Giles said...

Jane and Theresa, Great to hear from you today and glad that I could inspire just a little through my ramblings and a memory of a song I loved so well that somehow hits the mark when it comes to the writing quest.
And LOL let me know what you think of my Shadowmen

 
At 2:54 PM, Blogger Norah Wilson said...

Jennifer, wonderfully honest blog! I tend to subscribe to your theory that complete balance will always elude us, but that we must keep chasing it. I find it helps to tweak here and there, juggle priorities, etc., but only momentarily. Then I have to tweak something else. LOL. Then there are the big punches that you just have to roll with. I think that's the best we can reasonably do. :-)

Again, thanks for sharing. And great blurb. I'd buy that book!

 

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