The 1am Writing Session

I think that I may have multiple personalities.

I mean, in my writing.

I seem to write picture books that go from wild stories in the voice of the kid, to sweet and soft bedtime stories, and then full-on third person narrated silly stories about farts. I love all of them, and isn’t that the point?

Last night, I was flipping through my PiBoIdMo notebook. It was 1am, and I’d spent the day cleaning, going to the Santa Claus parade, out for dinner and then to see About Time (AMAZING). I was feeling guilty that I hadn’t come up with a new idea in a few days, and that most of my ideas were not very good.

So, I flipped through my notebook and read something I had jotted down while at work (in my Gr. 2/3 class). It was the most ridiculously strange rant that I’ve ever heard a student go on. Thank God I had my notebook nearby to write it down after this boy had finished.

I took his words and typed them into my blank document file. Within seconds, the story sprang to life. I could hear his voice saying the words again, and suddenly it was a mash-up of other stories I’ve heard from students. I did my job – I weaved these all together, until I felt the rhythm of the story slowing to an end. I wrapped it up, typed out “The End” and saved the file. In about 20 minutes, it was finished.

It’s funny how this happens. The character-voice-driven stories always seem to write themselves quickly. Then, I am stuck for months – sometimes years – trying to write a solid ending for the carefully written third-person tale about something a little more important.

Hey – I want to be recognized as a writer. I want to be published in a big way. I want to have all sorts of my writing put out there, but in order to get there, I have to actually do the work. So the 1am writing session was a success, and I now have one piece of writing that I can workshop a bit more and then maybe even submit somewhere. 

In fact, I think I’ll start the dummy for it this week. Unlike the boy in my story, I won’t be able to say that I’ve never done anything.


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