The Loops

The characters have become weary and cynical near the end of the Incomplete States series. I wonder how much they influence me and the converse. It’s an interesting loop on its own.

But of course I taste what they feel. It’s necessary. Regardless of my process, whether it’s all deeply in me and I’m mining the story, or it’s being fed to me or channeled through me from some other existence, as it sometimes feels (thanks to the power of focus and imagination), I taste the words, and they affect me.

Balancing the scales, writing and progress continues, and I’m enjoying it. It’s an empowering experience. (The end is nigh!) Thinking about it, it’s almost the opposite of the Doom Loop. It’s the Success Loop. (Weird that as long as I’ve heard of the Doom Loop, I’ve never thought about the Success Loop. I looked it up, confirming, yes, such a creature exists – of course.)

Like the Doom Loop, the Success Loop is a spiral. But where the Doom Loop takes you down (because you expect less, so you try less, etc.), the Success Loop lifts you up. You’re building on what you’ve achieved, adding success. As success is added, success is expected, so you work harder for that success. You learn to know and love the taste and feel of success, and the power and confidence that it generates.

The Success Loop is often a strong but fragile thing in a writer. Like a spider web, it has impressive strength for what it is, but like a web, it’s easily broken. If I’m an average writer and others are like me, we worry about not having enough talent, skill, luck, drive, energy, or time to be the writer that we think we can be, that we want to be. We’re always worried that we’ll fall short.

That’s not bad. Those worries anger and inflame me, often encouraging me, try harder, work harder, and do not give up. 

The characters have become grittier as I come to the end. “I want to reach the end,” they tell themselves and one another. “This must be ended.” And they push, and push, thinking that they can succeed.

In this case, I know more than them. I know the ending. It’s been written. All of this action is the final bridge to what will be, what already is. What they do now will not affect their ending.

I think that with such confidence, knowing how I’m tricking myself. These are written words. They’re subject to change. Especially once editing and revising begins.

As a final loop, I wonder, has my ending been written? Is what I’m trying to write and achieve all for nothing because my destiny is established and sealed, and nothing will change it?

Maybe, but perhaps not. Perhaps there multiple loops.

Maybe I’ll leap onto one of those.

It’s been a good day of writing like crazy, once again. I’m hungry, the coffee is gone, and, man, my butt feels sore.

Time to go on to other things.

For now.

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