Posted in WriterInMotion 2020

#WriterInMotion – Week 5 (Wrap up)

It’s no secret that I love Writer in Motion. I’m still very new to writing. I loved it as a kid (in like middle school) until puberty hit and I just lost all interest in most things due to crippling dysphoria. Once I transitioned, I fell back in love with both reading, and writing. But as a new writer it’s hard to tell whether anything you’re putting on paper is really worth the time and effort and heartache and everything else that comes with writing.

But the like a year and some change ago, one of my writer friends that I’d met a few months prior started this new project and I instantly fell in love. I didn’t do any writing that first time because I had a lot of other things going on in my life and didn’t have the time to dedicate to it. I was just a casual observer/cheerleader.

But there’s really something special about watching your piece of work evolve so much over a few weeks time span. I remember that first time thinking Yeah I’m definitely not as good a writer as these other people!

But when the second time came, and with it, the opportunity to give it a go, I jumped in head first and was met with so much love and cheering from other people that my confidence in myself as a writer grew tremendously.

The whole purpose of this is to show people like me that we have good writing in us, it just has to be coaxed out with some revisions and friends to help along the way. Without this group of people, without this hash tag, who knows if I’d ever have the confidence to actually show my writing to others. You’ve read my first drafts! They’re very rough!

But I’ve learned that everyone’s is. No one ever just sits down and shits out perfection on their first go. But we might put something down on paper that’s worth latching onto. Feeding, and caring for, molding to be better. And through multiple revisions, it can come out as something beautiful.

That’s really what I love about this project. The confidence to keep going over my work, and to find that little nugget of goodness that’s worth investing in. To bring that sparkle out of the whole load of garbage it came with. That’s really what writing is. All of us are storytellers, but those stories need honing before they can become great.

So I’ll keep doing this project every chance I get. It’s a great way to keep me writing, keep my circle of writer friends growing (love you Kay & Nicole!!!) and hopefully one day achieve that dream I lost so long ago, and only recently found.

Separately, I want to talk just a tad about my own piece this time, It’s Watching. I mentioned in week 1 that I was super excited about this story, that it didn’t feel like a complete dumpster fire like Wrapped Away did. Interestingly though, that didn’t make it any easier.

I thought maybe there would be less fixing I had to do, less issues to iron out, less everything compared to last time, but the opposite was true. Because I had something I knew was a great start, and something I loved, all the flaws in it became much harder to fix.

With this piece, I went over it at least 10 times over my self editing weeks finding new words, new ways to say things, and it never felt good enough. Not because it was bad, but because I knew I wasn’t doing it justice. Then my wonderful CPs came along and really knocked it out of the park. With their help, I think I got most of my vision on paper. By the time Jeni got to my work, it was like 90% line edits from a rushed draft from a heavy work week, and barely any actual story work needed to happen.

Which was great! Except that I lost sight of that because of a second rough week at work in a row. So here’s my second pitch for the day. If you’re struggling, take a day off. Give yourself the freedom to say “I’m in a rough spot, I need a mental health day.” and then go do something you love to get you back in your zone. I wasn’t able to due to being on call, which delayed my week 4 draft, but it eventually got done and I’m happy for that.

The story still isn’t perfect. It probably never will be. But it’s really great, and I’m super have to have written it, and seen this project through to completion. Maybe one day I’ll pick it up again and change that final line to something stronger like Jeni suggested. Now just wasn’t the right time for that change.

Maybe one day that’ll become a scene in a larger story. I think there’s a lot more to Mackenzie that doesn’t get told in this story. In my head, I know she’s already trapped in the forest. She has been for some time. That’s why when her brother shows up, he’s aged. But I don’t think that comes across, and if I turned this into a larger piece of work, I could really explore that.

Maybe one day. Until then, thanks for being here for this journey, and I’ll see you next time!

2 thoughts on “#WriterInMotion – Week 5 (Wrap up)

  1. I know exactly what it feels like, writing your first article – from your horrible first draft up to publishing it – you still feel uncertain if its worth it. But every write up is a learning curve. Hoping that someday, you will be able to reach someone, touch someone else’s life, aside from your own and be able to tell yourself “it is worth it after all..” I want you to know that you did. And thank you for sharing, Kayleigh! All the best and keep it up!


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