Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Yes, that's me -- writing, writing, writing
That's how it feels, sometimes. I've been nose to grindstone for the last month or so, if not here at home, then at work.
Don't get me wrong, I'm enjoying it. I'm learning a lot from the 'official' editing process, which is so different from the critiques, contest comments, and other feedback I've gotten on my books. This kind of feedback is from someone who knows nothing about this story and comes into it cold, looks at it, evaluates it carefully and then says, 'Hmm, this has to be fixed', or 'Hmm, this really worked.' It's an exhausting process but I feel like I'm learning, I feel like I'm asking myself the questions I need to ask before I call a work done.
It's funny, because I went through the same thing as I learned the ropes to be a tech writer. It took me a long time before I realized that there is no one perfect way to accomplish the research and writing of a technical manual (and some of the stuff I've written has been way technical, believe me. I mean, it truly was Rocket Science). Everybody has their own way of doing it, and we all have to conform, at least 90% of the time, to a uniform style. That means that creativity is somewhat limited but the creativity comes through when you actually sit down to write about that piece of software or that piece of functionality.
Which is harder to do -- craft a mystery novel or craft a technical document?
It's equal, I'd say. Or, rather, they're almost the same. A technical document is a mystery when I first start writing it. I don't understand the software, I don't know why it works the way it does and even worse, I don't know why it's important to my audience. A lot of the times it just flat out doesn't make sense.
Then I start poking and digging and using it, and the lightbulb goes off. THEN I can really start writing.
The same is true with a novel.
How lucky am I that elements of my life complement each other?
I know, I know. See my other blog (Mavens). We've been counting blessings this week.
It's all good.