I spent all day stuck, not writing, because I couldn’t work out a way for the Doctor to meet Miss Hartigan… I couldn’t work out how to do it, where to do it, when. All day, gone. Pissed off. Then I sat down to write, with no solution and… thought of it! Immediately. Obvious. Simple. If I’d started sooner…Ah, the only way to write is to write. For all my banging on about what to do if you’re really stuck on something, there’s nothing dumber than sitting there writing nothing at all. Stupid bastard job.
Russell T. Davies, Doctor Who: The Writer’s Tale
I love this quote from Russell T. Davies. It lingers in the back of my mind all the time, because I have lived it often enough to know it is true for me, and I find it immensely comforting that someone who has had as much success as him, still struggles with it.
So today, I sat down to write, facing two scenes that were overwhelming me. Well, I thought, the only way to write is to write…
I wrote one scene, and quickly realized that the other scene didn’t need to happen. I could get the emotional punch from this one, that I was worried about dragging out over two different scenes. Woo-hoo!
I focused on the characters and one prop in the room, along with one piece of information I wanted the readers to glean. And I wrote.
It’s not perfect, but it’s written. And I think it has some moments.
Jimmy flung himself into Audrey’s chair, swiveling it around to glare at me. “What in the hell do you think you’re playing at?” It started as a growl and ended as a roar. The thin partition walls of the office shook as his words battered their way through them, no doubt to the delight of Wee Kevin, sitting on the other side.
“Wh-what?” I managed. I was trembling now, and that sparked a curl of anger deep in my stomach.
“I’ve just got off the phone with Pat McGillivray.” The growl was back, but with the promise future shouting. “And he tells me that you’ve been in there accusing [REDACTED] of murder.”
(Yeah, this one’s a murder mystery…)
And that’s what I remembered about writing today. That the only way to write is to write.
Stupid bastard job ;)