I've probably never mentioned this, but husband is quite brilliant when it comes to creating plots. He gets a bunch of great ideas from dreams, but sometimes they just come to him out of the clear blue. During church on Sunday he grabbed one of the prayer cards, jotted down some notes and put it in his shirt pocket.
I was, as you might imagine, somewhat intrigued since I don't normally see him taking notes during the service. He told me during lunch that he'd come up with a great story idea that he thought I should turn into a novel. He's said this before, and I've never done it - but this time I've decided to accept his gift and write the book.
In the past it always felt like I'd be cheating if it was his idea. Things are different now because I've realized a few things:
1. A plot is critical, so his gift is very important. But someone will have to eventually put pen to paper if anyone else is ever going to enjoy the story. He won't be doing that. Although I'm crummy at plots, I'm not too bad at the actual writing, so I suppose you could say that we are both bringing our skills to the table.
2. I'm terrible at endings. Or...that's what seems to be the case from my first attempt at a novel. I wrote two very nice sized drafts of novels. The first two books in a trilogy. Here's the problem...neither novel ENDS. This is a profoundly unsatisfactory situation. I still have hopes that I will eventually develop the skills necessary to bring closure to my stories so I'm not trashing those novels...yet...but they are on hiatus. My husband, on the other hand, gave me a story complete with a (somewhat depressing) ending (which will probably be tweaked just a bit).
3. I am not a failure for putting the sci-fi novel on hold. This whole "I'm not a failure" theme is a new idea for me and I'm trying it on for size, but I have to say that so far I like the way it feels.
So...I'm choosing to take this lesson from the last six months: Sometimes you throw yourself into a project (or a person....hmmm....) and it (or they) appear to be a ginormous waste of time. When it's time to move on to the next project (or person) you take what you learned from your apparent failure and kick ass in your new project (or relationship).
There you go. Writing advice and dating advice all wrapped up in one nugget of wisdom.