Dec 23, 2011

Starting the Fire


At my house, our primary source of heat is a fireplace.  We have a gas heater that takes off the chill but it isn't the most efficient way to keep the house warm.  Because of this, I watch a lot of fires start.

Have you ever paid attention to how a log starts on fire?  The whole log?

First thing, to have the whole thing start on fire, is little, smaller logs have to start first.  The fire starts white - it's burning, but only just barely.  Then the flames change color, the heat increases, and when those have been really established, you can throw on full logs.

The first thing that will happen to the full log is it will smoke a little.  The smoke will increase, and you can blow on the flames to make them higher, but there is no telling the amount of time for what happens next.  If you don't know, it is only a matter of seconds before the full log will completely ignite - it has gotten hot enough, had enough heat surrounding it that it will completely start on fire.

So?  It's like writing (of course).  Both the process and the community and the publishing.  Think about all the authors who have traveled to publishing-land.  Once the deal is made, it's revisions and edits and deadlines and fast. 

Think about your experience in building your platform - in getting to know the writing community.  You start a blog and there are just a few people who will follow you and then they jump by 10 or 20 in a day or you start to have the friends whose stories you know well because all of a sudden the name and the face have a personality.

Think about the writing.  There are the times where you are just trying to get something to happen - anything.  Characters wander around the setting, trying to find someone to have something happen and then inspiration strikes and you forget about fixing typos for the minute because you have got to get that scene written out. 

When have you felt that flame?  What can we, as writers, do to feed the fire so this can happen more often?  

This is the last post before Christmas, but I hope you all have a WONDERFUL holiday and that you don't have to go to Walmart anytime in the next 72 hours.


Miranda Hardy said...

Great analogy. If you want it badly, you need to keep that fire burning. It takes patience and constant work. Have a great holiday.

Coleen Patrick said...

Great post!
Happy holidays Tasha!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Are you kidding? I haven't been to WalMart in over a week!
As a blogger, I smoldered for several months before catching on fire. Then I started hosting blogfests and began the Insecure Writer's Support Group to keep it going for everyone.
Have a wonderful Christmas!

Susanna Leonard Hill said...

Have a wonderful holiday, Tasha! And you couldn't pay me enough to go anywhere near Walmart! :)

Melissa Ann Goodwin said...

Excellent analogy. I'm started to build a new fire just this week. :-)

Jessica Therrien said...

I feel the flame when I get a new that feeling :)

Thanks for stopping by for my cover reveal!

Sarah Pearson said...

Merry Christmas to you Tasha :-)