Metawriting (or I never meta writing I didn’t like…)

My current project isn’t yielding much fruit, so I thought I’d do a little writing about writing.   You know, because that’s the way to finish a story:  by not writing it.  Anyway…

I’m having a bit of an identity crisis with regard to my writing.  The idea that it is necessary to specialize in order to be really successful is a tricky one for me.  On the one hand, by devoting all one’s time and energy to a single pursuit or area, it stands to reason that one would get pretty good at that one pursuit or in that one area.  But I’m not sure it’s so easy for me.  I was at work the other day, talking to a customer who also happened to be a writer, and she asked me what I wrote.  I told her that I was “dabbling” at the moment.

When I first decided I wanted to be a writer, which would have been about three years ago in November, I was writing fiction.  And what’s more, I was having some success at it.  (I found out the following semester that creative writing workshops will do that for you…)  But since that workshop, I have finished exactly one story. And it was lousy.

The news hasn’t been all bad, though.  In the three years that have passed since then I’ve done a huge amount of academic writing (being an English/Religion double major will do that for you…) and I’ve had some significant success at that, too.  Probably more success than I’ve ever seen in writing fiction.

But I can’t entirely shake this whole fiction thing.  My current project (although somewhat sluggish at the moment) has got me really jazzed.  It’s a story that I want to tell, and one that I think I can tell.  NaNoWriMo is coming up, and in the past that has been sort of an important time for me as a writer.  I guess we’ll see what happens.

And now that I’ve destroyed all my credibility as a writer, I hope I’ll still see you next time…


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