Wednesday, June 13, 2007

WIPicide: My Confession


Yeah, I did it. I killed my WIP yesterday.

I hit the delete button and sent more than 17,00 words to oblivion. It’s as though they never existed.
The ms wouldn’t move and I couldn’t get excited about working on it. If I’m not writing, then I’m not doing much of anything.
Being useless is a nice break, but it can’t go on forever. I’m here to write. Best I get at it.

The cure came to me in a meditation: Kill it.

The ms was stagnating. I knew it, but I’d held out hope that it was just the writerly blahs and that I’d get back at it soon enough.
No. The ms was not good. Downright boring. Lots of blathering and not much meat.
It wasn’t quite a wholesale slaughter. I kept a bit in a separate file. A few ideas were saved along with a relaxation procedure and a meditation that I’ve rolled over into each manuscript since the first one six years ago. I keep hoping I’ll give it a home someday.

Then I did it. I hit delete and button-murdered my creation.

I felt better right away. Once it was gone ideas started flowing. I’ve got a new approach to a fourth manuscript now and the material is spilling over from my mind on to notepaper everywhere.

And the world looks better. I’m starting to see beauty in the natural world again. It’s not to my usual level, but it’s on its way.

Yes, I killed it. It’s gone. It was the manuscript or me.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


Dawn said...

Brave girl! It just has to be done sometimes, and better to recognise that and do it than stagnate at that point for months. You've kept the bits that did work and the fact that the ideas are flowing again seems to me an indication that this "murder" was the right move. Good luck with the new ideas.

Crabby McSlacker said...


I can't delete anything, though I've got dozens of started and finished WIP's on my hard drive that I'd be totally embarrassed if anyone ever found.

Very brave indeed! Sounds like it was a liberating experience.

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks Dawn and Crabby. The murder was the right, though brutal, thing to do.