WORKING ON THE BLUEPRINT EXERCISES
I guess the arrogance I felt working on my Q&A would have taught me to approach the Blueprint exercises with trepidation, but hey, habits are hard to break. And I was very swiftly reminded that once, again, what I thought I knew about my story, what I thought I locked down, wasn't actually true. I know some of you out there will know the feeling of opening up a document, realizing you're not prepared and promptly shutting down said document and thinking, "it's okay, I'll try again tomorrow," and then tomorrow comes and your fear and anxiety and insecurities are back and the process repeats itself. *Sigh*
But I said I was going to do this thing. I AM doing this thing. So I put my big girl pants on and started to work on the exercises - all the while feeling like I was already failing. I have to wonder if this is what a majority of the work is going to feel like? Heavy, hard, insecurity-inducing work? While I was able to get through the target audience and the marketing exercises fairly quickly - it was the story-specific questions that bogged me down. In fact, when I got to the one exercise about writing your last chapter - I freaked out a bit. I don't write my last chapter until... the end! How was I supposed to do this?!
So I sent an email to Amy, my coach:
Okay, I’m *almost* ready to submit them - it’s just the “write your last chapter” one that trips me up. I am (and always have been) a very linear writer. Even though I usually know what the ending is going to be, it’s always hard for me to actually write out of order. Everything I’m writing is coming out so… blah. And forced. But I’m trying to put my big girl pants on and finish...
Just wanted to update you!
Okay remember that just because you write your last chapter doesn't mean it has to always be your last chapter. Just make it the last chapter of-the-moment. Maybe it will stick, maybe not. I revised my last chapter of my 2017 novel over and over again. I only even sort of knew how it ended!
So -- there's no pressure.
Okay, see what she did right there? She LISTENED. She reassured me and she gave me guidance. In one swift moment, I could feel my blood pressure go down. I felt more at ease about the exercise. I tend to sometimes react to things as an ALL or NOTHING type of situation, but her insistence that it could be a chapter of-the-moment made me look at it in a new light. Like, "yes, okay. This isn't perfect. Heck, it's not even good. I don't even like it. But I can't get to what I DO like without knowing what I don't like..."
Speaking of my coach - I don't want you to feel left out on how it actually FELT to get a coach. It's important to recognize the emotional weight that comes with being paired with your coach! So I'll be showing that to you SOON!
So that's where I'm at. I've finished the Blueprint for a Book exercises and I'm ready to have them reviewed. I'll be anxiously awaiting Amy's feedback and trying not to think about all the hard work I know I have ahead of me...
In my next Volume - I'll actually be sharing some of my exercises I submitted, the feedback I received and how I plan to incorporate that feedback as I move forward.