Thursday, October 11, 2007

Observations on Writing

Yesterday, as I finished an interview for a rather exciting article, I felt that adrenaline rush! You know the one--the giddy excitement of starting a new project, where anything is possible, and you know you'll walk away smarter and enriched.

I'm a natural adrenaline junkie--I play paintball, love roller coasters. I think the search for that adrenaline rush is part of what attracted me to a career as a writer/reporter.

Writing as a career, the adrenaline wears off in the tedium of "interview, transcribe, write." But every once in a while, a story inspires, and I feel it again. That's why I keep going. The balance of always searching for that story, while finding enough work to pay the bills.

Some time around 9 PM last night, I felt experienced another sensation I haven't felt in a while as a writer. I entered a little contest at The Novelette . The contest doesn't pay a lot to the winner, so I figured I'd spend an hour on the short essay and be done with it. Unhappy with my result, I posted the essay in the Share Your Work section of Absolute Write and got some great feedback. Then I started tweaking. Tightening. Moving paragraphs around. Searching for that perfect word.

I was no longer writing for the contest, I was writing for the fun of it. With no thought of hourly rates or impending deadlines, writing felt like a game. I think it's important to do that to stay inspired.

Check out the contest, read some of the entries (they're quite enjoyable) and vote! I wouldn't mind if you voted for my story; it's called A Heart, Waiting. But pick the story you feel is best. Or maybe submit one yourself!

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