So far this term, I’ve been forced to take my writing process into consideration. I do not enjoy taking my writing process into consideration. I enjoy writing. Especially when it comes to poetry. But that is a different rant for a different day.
The writing process for TKS works better, more efficiently, and more sensibly than does my personal writing process for creative work. The latter is scattered, informal, and makes me feel like a Type B person when I’m pretty sure I’m not a Type B person. However, this mode can still apply to TKS sometimes, and for reasons that I cannot control.
Last Wednesday, on publication night, it felt like all our well-planned deadlines (a nod to Anna Meier for changing them this year in such a way as to make everyone less insane) and well-organized systems had been tossed to the wind. My lovely co-editor had asked a writer for revisions on Monday night, but we did not get them on Monday night. We did not get them on Tuesday night. You can probably imagine that we got them on Wednesday night, of course, since that’s implied. But when? Was it right at 4 p.m., the beginning of our publication process? No. Was it right after dinner time? No. How dare I be so optimistic.
We did not get revisions in until 8:45 p.m. I was overjoyed that we actually got them, but until that time, I was fuming. I’m pretty sure everyone in the publication office was afraid of me. Actually, I know this for a fact; they very graciously took a “by all means!” attitude when I declared that I would most definitely be going to the Quickie to buy a pack of cigarettes, in spite of quitting and in spite of their support of my quitting. (Note: I didn’t end up getting cigarettes after all.)
I think that timeliness is important. Incredibly important. I blame this one on my family: they are always, perpetually 10 minutes late, so I am always, perpetually five minutes early. “On time” to me means five minutes early. So, when most people are actually “on time,” I’ll already consider them to be late.
But what I (re)learned from being crazy frustrated and forced to wait is that we cannot control everything. No one can. It’s a waste of time to think otherwise, because things almost always go wrong. In considering my creative writing process and even my movement process in dance, it’s essential to remember that things will change as I go, and I must change with them. Last Wednesday night, there was no way we could have gone without that story simply because we didn’t have it in. We had to keep our options open.
We, in the immortal words of Tim Gunn, had to make it work.