Saturday, March 10, 2007

I'm partway through Steven King's On Writing,

which is one of the best, if not THE BEST, book I've read on the subject. Until this morning, when I came upon a terrifying suggestion from Mr. King. (It has nothing to do with the genre of horror, either.)

He strongly suggests that I stop watching TV if I want to get serious about being a writer. I repeat, STOP watching TV.

I have a list of reasons why I should continue to watch TV on a regular basis. I mean, doesn't TV give me material for my writing? Shouldn't I stay updated on current events, not to mention have exposure to teenage cultural icons, which I need if I'm going to keep writing young adult fiction???


But I have to admit, Mr. King makes a good point. If I devoted all the time I spend watching TV every week to reading and writing, I would probably be twice as productive.

But I also know me. And I know that I can't give TV up completely. So I made another list. This is a list of the TV shows I'm going to watch. The only ones I will watch from now on:
1. The Sarah Silverman Program (So funny, so politically incorrect, I love it.)
2. The Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency (I know, I know... But I'm totally addicted.)
3. Whatever "Top" show happens to be on (Top Design, Top Chef, Project Runway, etc.)
4. The Simpsons (which will give me more than enough cultural fodder, plus come on, it's genius.)
5. Best Week Ever (which will also fill me in on the best moments from all the reality shows I'm not watching anymore!)

You don't see American Idol listed here, because it comes on three nights a week and sometimes runs for two hours at a time and is (in the words of Lelaina Pierce) a "Master at the Art of Time Suckage."
If I really want to know the status of my favorites, like Melinda Doolittle, I can check the website to see if they make it to the next round. So I'm quitting Idol. We had a good thing going--while it lasted. But it just wasn't meant to be.

I also want to say right here and now that I reserve the right to swap shows, like if one of my selected programs ends a season, or gets cancelled. But I WILL agree to replace it with another show of the same length, be it a 30-minute show or an hour-long show, or if we ever get HBO again, sometimes they have weird lengths, like 42 minutes or something.

I know I may stray from my commitment, but I feel good about it. One thing I probably should have done is wait until AFTER spring break to make this decision, but oh well. Think how far I'll get in my second book. I already have the first page, but not much else. More on that later.

In other news, the agent (who I've given an exclusive) will receive my full manuscript in the next few days. Then, she has two weeks to decide if she wants to represent me and shop me to a publisher. I'll let you know the news as soon as I find out. Keep your fingers crossed!


some chick said...

i read "On Writing" a couple of years ago when I was trying to do more creative writing - short stories, etc. and seeking publication for them. But then things got crazy, and crazier and writing kind of fell to the wayside (one reason I'm SOOO happy for you is that I get to live vicariously through you!) and Kings' book had to be one of the best books I have read on writing. Especially the part about rejection letters. Of course, if I ever decide to take up creative writing again, besides blogging, I'll try to lay off the booze and the coke.

Good luck with the TV. We gave ours away a year and a half ago and we don't even miss it. All the good shows are on iTunes anyway.

Brad said...

haven't read King yet, but could shurely due with some input on rejection letters ...

meanwhile, fingers crossed, yet if this exclusive fizzles, sooner or later one will go under the moon!

rock on, aymzz!

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