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Writing is Like Knitting Socks

From the time I learned to knit, I wanted to knit socks, but using double pointed needles intimidated me. My friend helped me to get started, and now I have knitted several inches of my first sock.

When I started knitting, I knitted a few rows, pulled them out, and knitted them again until I got it right. Sometimes this frustrated me.

Knitting relaxes me. I usually knit in the evenings while watching NCIS with Hubby. Even though my fingers move steady with knitting and purling, my project grows slowly.

You know, the same can be said for writing. Sometimes we feel like we have no idea what we’re doing. Guidance from a trusted mentor helps to lay the foundation. Word by word, paragraph by paragraph, page by page, our WIPs grow.

But sometimes we’re too impatient. Once we write that first draft, we think we’re on our way to winning the next Christy. Uh, not so much.

The more I wrote, deleted, and wrote again, I strengthened my skills. Trying to get it right wasn’t easy. Often I experienced a swirl of emotions that ended with me clicking save and closing my WIP until another time. I spent time reading well-written novels and craft books. I attended conferences and retreats. I shared my writing with trusted critique partners.

Taking my time to learn the craft without rushing publication has helped me to land a top-notch agent. And now she is partnering with me to help achieve my dreams.

Crafting a publishable novel does not happen overnight. Like those knitting projects, writing takes time, patience, and perseverance.

Your turn: Is there something in your life besides writing that you struggled to learn, but then celebrated when you achieved it? Are you a patient writer?

Lisa Jordan

7 Comments

  • When I was in grade school, I wanted to play the Saxophone, but my fingers were so small that my only choices were the flute (which my sister played…so forget it) and a trumpet. Some notes used the same keys, but the way you formed your mouth made the sound. Man, that was hard, but it paid off when I could actually do it! However, I don't play anymore. As far as writing goes, I'm patient for the most part, some days I get anxious about publication, but I force myself to just keep writing, revising, and breathing. One day…
    BTW, I love NCIS too! Mark Harmon's come a long way since Summer School! 🙂

  • I think I'm probably a patient writer. I hope. LOL
    I've always wanted to learn the piano or violin or to speak Spanish fluently. Haven't been able to do any of those things though. Yet. 😉 Congrats on the agent! May we hear great news soon. 🙂

  • Oh, and thank you for stopping by my blog last week! Sorry it took so long to return the visit…

  • Lisa Jordan says:

    Jessica, my son plays trumpet. I remember those beginning years ~cringe~ but through practice, he's turned into quite the musician. Now he's minoring in music.

    You're smart to stay at it even when writing is hard.

    Mark Harmon is one fine-looking man. He was hot in Summer School and mighty distinguished as Agent Gibbs. My all-time favorite show.

  • Lisa Jordan says:

    Jessica,

    I said when I turned 40, I'd learn how to play piano. Haven't done it yet, but it's never to late. In an upcoming book, my hero is a concert pianist. Maybe I'll learn for research. 🙂

    Thanks for the congrats about my agent. I've been with her for almost two years now. Love her!

  • T. Anne says:

    Your comment on my blog really struck me. i'll pray you resolve your issues long before your characters do! I think a lot of my life mirrors my characters as well and honest it's not by my design!!! Lord have mercy.

    *I use to crochet. I loved the way I could do it mindlessly while watching TV, although my edges always turned out ragged. One day I might just take it up again. =)

  • Jill Kemerer says:

    I just found you through Jessica Nelson's site. I love to crochet! It is very relaxing. I'm sad to admit I haven't worked on my half-finished blanket in over a year. Maybe it's time to bring that baby down? 🙂

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