Expectation and Reality

There’s thing in our heads called a brain. It’s crazy and it does a million things and once and somehow is at the core of who we perceive ourselves to be.

One of the things this brain does all the time is process potential future events.

This of course is a purely survivalist practice, as we once were animals living in the food chain. Now this process has become a part of things like when should I get onions and not wanting to go to some social obligation later and how hard it’s going to be to write that next scene I want to get right.

We all have expectations. For everything. Even if we try not to.

Expectations often do not match reality. Because expectations are just some scenarios we have made up in our heads-ones that often aren’t even strongly based on our past experiences but rather our hopes and fears.

For Example,

Expectation: Man, writing this next scene is going to be hard. There’s a lot of detail and content I want to impart in a compact amount of writing. What choices am I going to make for this character, for this reaction? I have to make sure the details line up with my greater goal for the story and the preceding and following plot.

Reality:  Sit down in my chair, open Scrivener. Catch up on where I am in the flow of the scene. Double check my outline to see major points. Start typing. Keep typing. It goes and goes. Hey, I already know all of these things that I wanted to do. I’ve had this in my head for days. This is pretty smooth.

Despite the fact that that is my experience sitting down to right 19 times out of 20, STILL sometimes I procrastinate sitting down to write, daunted by fear or laziness.

That’s because my brain is lying to me.

Expectations are crap. Get rid of them. And by that I mean, don’t let them control your actions, unless it’s controlling them for the better, of course. 😀



When You Feel as Lost as your Characters.

I don’t even like those two words. They feel like a lie. A crappy, cliched lie. Writer’s Block? No, I could write easily. It might be garbage, but I could pump out worthless, hollow content all day. (See: E.L. James)

Here I sit, one chapter away from completing my Post-apoc novel I’ve been lovingly slaving over for two years. One damned chapter. It’s not even the last chapter for Mad Max’s sake. It’s not because I don’t know what to write. I have already outlined what it should be. I just don’t feel that what I decided it should be does the story justice. Woe is me! (First world non-nuclear fallout problems.)

Well, screw it. I’ll wait. I’ll wait for it to be right. Every day I wake up and claw my mind for ‘le mot juste’ so to speak, hoping the perfect idea will pop into my head on how to reinvent the end of this one character’s arc.

Maybe, Hopefully, one day I’ll have deadlines to fulfill. When that day comes, I’ll force it out, butcher’s cleaver edit it and come up with what will at least satisfy me. Until that day comes I’ll just enjoy the freedom that comes with being an utterly unpublished novelist– the time is all mine. Now I just have to hope I don’t get hit by a bus or have an anuerism until then. At least there’s no motorcyle-driving flail-wielding wastelanders chasing me.