Monday, June 15, 2009

Burning the Candle

I'm working on a book. Good lord, who isn't? but what the hell, I like my own writing so I figure I'm just keeping myself entertained, if nothing else.

This book was brewing for awhile, and I've mentioned it before; I wrote a hundred pages or so, and then put it aside. But in the last couple of weeks, it's come to life again, seemingly of its own accord. The problem is, it wakes up at night. Late, late at night. After everyone goes to bed but me, the characters need attention.

So I drink an entire pot of coffee and go at it. I haven't been getting to sleep before 4 a.m. I'm up at 7:30. I feel certain that's not enough sleep. Seriously, I'm a girl who needs 9 hours.

But I find that I'm almost enjoying the strange, dreamy feeling that I have during the day. Perhaps it's just that I'm not quite sleep-deprived enough yet. But I like the middle of the night too, the privacy. And sometimes I think of all the people I run into here, from other countries and time zones all around the world, up and about in their daylight hours while I sit writing in the dead dark of the Brooklyn night. I like that thought.

18 comments:

PI said...

Keep at it Leah - remember you like your own writing and others do too. You need to nurture that feeling on the rocky road to publication. I have been doing that for three years and quite suddenly its beginning to pay off. The best of luck and keep writing.

Jimmy Bastard said...

You were born to be a writer. You know it, we know it, and hopefully soon a whole new audience will know it well.

Perhaps we look up at the same moon late at night when the inspiration is at its best?

mapstew said...

Keep at it.
I'm another late-nighter. I love crowds, (I AM an entertainer!), but I also love when all have gone to bed and Im reading and havin' a 'bev' all alone in the quietness.

nick said...

I tried writing a novel once but after 100 pages I got total writer's block and got no further. Perhaps I should have kept it in the hope that years later the muse would return. You're certainly a great writer so I hope your book comes to fruition.

I'm always surprised by how normally I function even if I've had precious little sleep. The body somehow adapts and pulls some extra resources out of somewhere.

Candie Bracci said...

Dear Leah!Sleep more.We are similar in many ways I see(sorry,lol),I write a book too..but don't play with your health,sleeping is important to carry on.One night is ok but if you keep on doing that it's a nervous breakdown coming!I wish you all the best for your book,it doesn't matter the time we take I think,the importance is to be well in ourselves.Have a nice day :)

Brian Miller said...

i know how you feel. the other night T found me in the kitchen writing with marker on legal pad in the dark...a thought had awoken me and did not want to wake anyone. excited that you are writing a book. stay at it but give it time. let it birth itself.

Emerson Marks said...

Sleeping half four 'til 7? Christ on a bike! You must be popping bennies like nobody's business.

Sesame street down your street? Bloody bloody hell. That takes the biscuit that does.

I hope you get to finish your book. What is it? A love story? Bored house wife has it off with bloke from band?

Auntie, aka Dog Girl said...

Hey girl,
I agree with Jimmy. You were born to be a writer.
Good lord how you manage to find the time?!
Onward!

Leah said...

PI--I'm glad to hear you're having some external success with your writing! I think what you say is correct. You must be your own booster, and enjoy it. If it's agonizing, and one is full of self-criticism, well...it's probably pointless...

Jimmy--I always say that a writer is one who is compelled to write--and you know whereof I speak, don't you--about that moon, well, I like to think we do.

map--late-nighters understand each other on this point! And yes, I like the peace and I like the crowds, both have their joys!

nick--did you throw your 100 pages out? I don't usually get rid of my writing bits and bobs, I never know when I'm going to enjoy reading them again, and at the very least I can get a little giggle at the expense of my younger self and her self-consciousness writing!

Candie--a book! good for you. Yes, of course I won't take it so far that I have a collapse, I think my body would just force me to sleep before that point--although the vast quantities of strong coffee after midnight probably aren't that good for me, lol. But for now, I can't help it, I am much more productive in the wee hours of the a.m.!

Brian--so you know what I mean, sometimes the wee hours are the best for inspiration. I'm trying not to take too too long with my first draft, trying to be disciplined and accomplish a certain amount every day. I would say this writing thing is a combination of inspiration and dogged discipline.

EM--It is like totally Valley of the Dolls over here at Chez Weatherinthestreets!

As for the book idea, bored housewife having it off with bloke from band, that is excellent indeed, but as it's my real life I suppose I don't need to write about it...

Between the muppets, the uppers, the affair with Jack White, you can start to see how I wouldn't get much sleep!

Auntie--I can only find time between midnight and 4 a.m.! Therein lies the difficulty...

MJ said...

Night time is the right time.

savannah said...

go with the flow, sugar! we have as much control over our writing (as in the doing) as we do in breathing....it just is. xoxox

Cinnamon said...

You are a gifted writer already Leah, so just enjoy your writing, enjoy the process, enjoy watching your creation unfold.

But do get enough sleep!

Brandy Rose said...

I love the dreamy feeling I get when I'm in a writing mood.

merelyme said...

YEA!!!!!!!!!!! I am so excited! Go, Leah! Go! Yea!!!!!!!!!!!!

Suzanne said...

Jesus Christ, I missed this? I take off one freakin' day and I'm a day behind.

1) You go girl!

2) No, I don't write late at night because I want to...it's menopause.

3) Emerson...you wanna just kick his ass out of that hospital bed!

4) Look up at the moon. Good Lord, just do it and get it over with. Boy do I have a funny post about Jimmy. I just have to get it up. I discovered it in the laundry room to make it even better! He'll have to visit my blog for this one. Trust me! You won't even believe it. I kept the book. I'll send it to you. I think Jimmy's famous and not telling you.

5) What is this? The Wild Onion? Lay down on the Macy's sofa darling and Cece will massage your feet.

Cece "I'm not doing it."

Okay, Kylie...

"I'm not feeling so good."

Okay, Bindi...

"I'm cooking."

Okay, RC...

"It's my birthday, I'm busy."

Jeasus Christ.

Okay,

Just Bob...I'm waiting for something, so no time.

Kylie,

"I'm in Australia."

Mark,

"Ditto."

Megan,

"I'm in LA."

Giggi,

"My hubby's calling."

IV

"I see tits, sorry."

Okay, so it's just you and me. Lay back and enjoy.

XO

Knitter in an Urban Zoo said...

I am not at all surprised. Your writing is wonderful and enjoyable to read. In fact, I save up a bunch of your posts to read all at once.

Cheers!

Karen ^..^ said...

Writing at night is the best. It is when the world sleeps and our characters awaken and come alive.

I can't wait to see your name on my favorite Barne's and Noble shelf.

You rock, you write so beautifully, and I know whatever you are working on is brilliant.

muralimanohar said...

I adore the middle of the night. Not even the family leaving me alone during the day (SO rare) can match the feeling of peace.