Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Back On The Writing Wheel

If you read my September 19th blog, you’ll know that 2012 has been an extremely busy year for me. Yet, with Four Weddings and a Funeral, it felt nothing like a movie script. The only reason for that? The absence of writing in my life this year!

When my son returned from his mission trip in Europe at the end of 2011 for a few months, I gave up my writing loft for him to turn into Missions HQ. I took down all the pictures of my characters from the current novel I’m writing that had been plastered all over the loft, and gave up the space to a greater cause.

Now that Kyle is happily married and living in Finland, and my other son, Ryan, is happily married and living in Cape Town (literally on two opposite sides of the world), the house belongs to just hubby and me (and of course, Wally, the dog!)

So, with all the weddings and travels behind me, I decided it was time to give the house a good old spring clean (it was Spring after all), and reclaim my writing space.

How excited I was when I found the box containing my characters’ pictures. I dusted each one off, and found their place on my now blank notice board. For weeks they’d been calling to me in my mind – what a great reunion this finally was. Although the loft is not yet where it needs to be, I’m almost there.

Next order of business was to buy myself a brand new laptop. A beautiful shiny red model! This investment into my writing was long overdue – and I’ve promised myself that this laptop is for writing only!

With a spanking new black keyboard beneath my fingertips, I felt set to go. Almost. I realised there were still some important things I needed to get back to writing and join my characters in their world. I needed my programmes. And I needed to get back into learning too. So I dutifully downloaded Y-Writer and Kindle Reader for PC and ensured all my Kindle e-books were loaded to this new laptop. From the myriad of writing book choices, I decided on “The Complete Handbook of Novel Writing: Everything You Need to Know about Creating & Selling Your Work (Writers Digest)”. It’s been an interesting and informative read so far – I definitely recommend it!

Now that Y-Writer was loaded, I set about getting my novel back in place after having lost so much work when my flash crashed. Now with literally a clean slate, I determined to do it all by the book and in proper order this time. I rejoiced that I had emailed what I’d written on my novel to my sister some months ago, and then bemoaned my fate when I realised a huge chunk of my writing had not been a part of that document. I did not look forward to rewriting that last part, so I searched through the emails on my old laptop, rejoicing when I found that I’d sent the absolute latest version to a friend in Canada. Unfortunately though, I’ve lost all my research and timeline notes. It’s possible I might be able to find them in the recovered files obtained after the flash crash, but I’m not holding my breath. Hopefully I’m far enough into the story that I’ll no longer require this information. And it’s just possible that I have a hard copy in the pile of paper belonging to this manuscript that I need to sort out and file.

At the moment I’m reading through my manuscript, editing, sorting and making notes as I go. It’s a slow process and I feel like I keep starting over as I wonder whether I’d checked this, or that. I am certainly looking forward to the day that I get to that last word I’d written so long ago and can continue penning this story.

I wish, as writers, we were able to adopt a hamster in the wheel attitude. Just get on that writing wheel and don’t stop until the story is done. However, the writing life is not so simple and life is just that – a part of life – and most times it gets in the way of being able to just write. There will always be births, deaths, visitors, housework, career, business trips, holidays, illness, housework … the list goes on. I think the secret though is, when we get on that writing wheel, to write for all we’re worth.

MARION UECKERMANN’s writing passion was sparked in 2001 when she moved to Ireland with her husband and two sons. Since then Marion has has published some devotional articles in Winners at Work and The One Year Book of Joy and Laughter (published August 2011), as well as inspirational poetry online and in a poetry journal. Marion, who loves to multitask, has written her first Christian Women’s novel (unpublished) and is currently working on the sequel as well as a Historical Romance novel. Marion now lives in Pretoria East, South Africa in an empty nest with her husband and a crazy black ‘Scottie’. Marion is a member of the Christian Writers of South Africa and can be contacted via email on marion(dot)ueckermann(at)gmail(dot)com


  1. Some good thoughts here Marion. I love the analogy of the hamster in his wheel! Now get running, friend!

  2. I second Shirl's comments. Did notice "housework" appeared twice in the list. I think that's a bit too infrequently -- in my life it should be every other word. ;-) Either "housework" or "interruptions."
    Saying a prayer for your writing.

  3. Ah, losing your documents...every writer's nightmare. Sounds like you're well on your way again, though. Enjoy!

  4. Sounds like you're all set. Enjoy getting back into it, Marion.

  5. Very encouraging Marion! When I don't get to carry on writing I still tend to feel like I "failed" but you set my mind straight. Sometimes we just need to re-start...and I am sure my time will come. Thank you for sharing your experience as an example.

  6. I'm so glad that you found the email with the latest version of your book and hope a hard copy turns up.

    Enjoy your writing.