What's Your Real-Life Writer Fantasy?
Universal Fantasy Course
One of the UFs I flipping love in movies is when a story just pours out of the previously blocked writer.
I enjoyed 2021’s Netflix holiday darling, Love Hard for many reasons. [Short Butter List: Lonely City Girl Gets Holiday-Adopted Into A Cozy Great Family, Guy Likes You As You Already Are, One of You Gets to Do the Love Actually Poster Board Flip.]
But that scene where the overdue story comes pouring out of the main character because she’s no longer confused, and everything is absolutely clear?
WRITER ICE CREAM!
Oh my gosh, it’s up there with Diane Keaton’s character finally sobbing out a new play in Something’s Gotta Give and a heavily fictionalized version of Charlie Kaufman calmly writing his long-overdue screenplay in the last five minutes of Adaptation.
But in actual writer life, there’s little chance of us receiving a huge burst of creative energy fueled by events that happen to us just in time to finish the story we set out to write.
Listen, I’m the mother of three when I’m not doing this author stuff. Drama in my real-life is more likely to derail my writing than spark any great stories inside of me.
So, here’s my real-life-approved writer fantasy:
Writing Books with Joy, Clarity, Focus, Ease, and Butter
Here’s my breakdown of this writer fantasy….
JOY: When readers ask me which books are my favorites, my answer is never about the stories themselves but my experience writing them.
And, my favorite experiences are always the ones where I have…
CLARITY: Whether my outline is a loose bullet-point list or a detailed synopsis with Butter Comps, I’m super clear on why my story’s plot and situations are butter from the hooky beginning to the happily ever after end. I know who my characters are and all the buttery reasons readers will come to care deeply about them and their goals. And, because I’m super-clear on all these things, I’m able to write my story with…
FOCUS: Some writers call this Flow. I simply call it not wanting to stop when my sprint timer is done. Ask any writer who has ever sprinted. There’s a huge difference between checking to see how much time you have left on this current writing slog and being so engrossed in the story you’re telling that you actually have to “come back” to the real world when that alarm sounds.
I much prefer the latter. Which brings us to….
EASE: Ease presents differently for each book. Sometimes, it’s a fast draft with barely any edits needed before sending it off for developmental feedback and proofing. For other books, it’s working so closely with my intuition that I know exactly how to fix any craft, character, and plot problems that come up along the way—I’m a story engineer, using butter to create and fix at the same time.
Mostly, it’s not second-guessing myself at every turn because I’m writing with Joy, Clarity, Focus, Ease, and Butter.
No matter the case, this writer fantasy ultimately means that I’ve happily written an easy-to-market book.
Let me tell you, there’s nothing in the world like being able to clearly explain to potential story consumers exactly why your book tastes good—then getting to sit back as an abundance of readers enjoy the fantastic meal you’ve served. Now, and for years to come.
And thanks to a writing practice that includes lots of UF butter, this is a fantasy that’s come true for me more often than not.
Does my real-life writer fantasy match yours? Could you use some more butter in your writing practice?
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