Sunday, August 19, 2007

"blowing" your W.A.D.D.


Do not give me that look. It is a real condition.

Honest. (Fine, maybe it’s not an ‘official’ condition yet)

WE ALL suffer from it at some point. (If you don’t it’s highly contagious and it will strike you eventually)

What is it?

Writer’s Attention Deficit Disorder. WADD

You know the symptoms: Unfocused, and you have an inability to stay on track with your story. Ideas are just rattling about inside your head. No idea really works for your story and you keep vacillating between what you want and should write. NOTHING seems to fit. For those with a very bad case they are unable to start a story. The worst is if you cannot even FINISH a story

Treatment: Varies. Chocolate sometimes helps. Exercise. The best thing is to find the one thing that motivates you (and no, not the bill collector—fear just makes it worse).

Well, I would like to say I have found the cure, but the bottom line is it is a chronic illness, everyone gets it at some point and it keeps coming back. (If you think about it, WADD is like a Cold. A virus that just hangs around and strikes when your immune system is weak)

Do you have W.A.D.D.? How do you "blow" it off?
This is something we talk about a lot. Still I could not resist the pun....
Yes, I have issues, but that is another blog and another time.


JoAnn said...

Mary, I suffer greatly from this disorder! Sorry, I don't have a cure.

But I found that I can wrestle it into temporary submission by entering contests. I really like having a "short-term" goal that has the possibility of boosting my morale (yeah, well, and also the possibility of shattering my morale!). I entered another contest today -- the first one I've entered that requires a synopsis. And it's a one-page synopsis, no less! But I found that working through that synopsis really got me focussing on my story, and it particulary made the weak areas stand out. I have no idea if I'll final -- (I'm batting about .328 right now), but the act of entering my ms and cleaning it up is very rewarding.

MaryF said...

That is fantastic, a very good cure. I'd like to enter some, but I have finish my bloody story...!I do have to ask a very stupid question...Lets say write the synopsis--does your MS have to be finished?

JoAnn said...

You have a lot more discipline than I do. If I waited until I finished the book to enter a contest, well, I, uh, wouldn't be entering very many contests. :-) Most contests require only the beginning of the book as an entry (the first chapter or the first 10 pages or the first 25, etc.) Of course the trick is that what if you final and the editor judge asks to see your full? Hasn't happened to me yet, but I'm looking for a sagging middle contest to enter so I can get beyond the first three chapters!

As for a synopsis, some people say it's easier to write a synopsis before you finish the book; that you're less likely to put in unnecessary information. Others say its easier to write one after you finish. But there's no rule -- just whatever works best for you.