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Pedantic title, I know. But I heard the word ‘germane’ used in conversation today and couldn’t help myself. It is an awesome word! And since I don’t think I have ever used the word before, I just had to insert it somewhere.

I am taking a writing class at one of the local universities. It is specifically aimed at writing the second draft.

A million butterflies swarmed my belly as I boarded the bus to go to class. “Am I good enough?” ping-ponged inside my head, bounced off “Why am I doing this again?” and finally spiraled into “Take a deep breath. Absorb all you can. Do the work.”

The thing about writing is that is a craft. And like any craft it must be honed. And the only way to hone it is to silence the neurotic butterflies, sit down and do the work.

Which is why, for me, right now, this class is the right thing.

I can write until my fingerprints are eroded from typing and it still won’t matter because  I am pretty sure that the reason that I cannot finish the darn WIP is because  I have a structure problem.

There I said it. My story has a structure problem.

I have a feeling that the reason the characters slipped and skid down this gnarled convoluted path is because somewhere along the way I stopped listening to the story and just wrote to get the words down. And now I have 80,000 words of back-story and monkey-swinging-from-a-tree dialogue in desperate need of a big fat red editing marker.

Which means, now I get to toss the WIP off the wall, pretend at being the King’s men (well, woman) and Humpty Dumpty my story together again.

Oh joy.

So I am going to be a good girl and do my homework, answer my editing questions and chart my hero’s journey. Because at the end of the day, it is about the story. And despite the holes and gnarls I have to mend, I really do believe in my story.

And as uncomfortable as revising makes me: I am going to sit in that class, absorb all I can, and do the bloody work.

 

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