Saturday, April 7, 2007

A Writer’s Block cont...

I had been doing a lot of web work that involved writing web copy so I would tell myself I was really writing, just not stories. I convinced myself other tasks were more important, more tangible, and more directly related to earning a living. It is a mindset I feel both my sister and I struggle to over come. With my sister, I think it is the concept that one cannot enjoy their job, and since she enjoys illustrating our story, it can’t be a real job. Getting to redraw a tractor or set up a brochure, that is a real job, but creating and painting dragons and gargoyles for a living, please that’s fun, so it can’t be a real job.

For me I think it is the radical shift of change from number to words. Analytical problem solving with numbers is a breeze compared with writing a story. Building a model to take net revenue down to a factory widget level to forecast needed resources based on productivity metrics and system enhancements, then determining cost reduction and avoidance benefits as well as DMOQ impacts, piece of cake. Putting a string of words together to make coherent sense in addition to being entertaining, not a piece of cake. Perhaps it is because with numbers there is usually a right and wrong answer, but with words it is more subjective. I know there are rules of grammar, proper sentence structure and the avoidance of my greatest vocabulary adversary...adverbs.

I confess, I had no earthly idea until I read Stephen King’s Memoirs on Writing, how quite hideously vulgar these monstrous modifiers really were in writing. After finally finishing Mr. King’s book on his harsh view of these loathly despicable words, I slowly started to really notice when writing emails, posts, and manuscripts, I certainly quite especially liked using these dreadfully submissively nemesis of words. Truthfully, I don’t really particularly remember adverbs having such a very bad rap when I was going through school, but I am sure they probably did. I should actually research to see when exactly adverbs became such a rather large nuisance to the literary language. When did humans stop shouting and start shouting angrily? When did we stop whispering and start whispering quietly? When did we quit slamming the door and start slamming the door loudly? When did I totally go off in a tangent and start sarcastically babbling on about adverbs? I will stop instantly.

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