TMM: One Word at a Time


When asked, ‘How do you write?’ I invariably answer, ‘one word at a time.’ – Stephen King

Sometimes I catch a glimpse of the future. Whether is just a scene from a chapter I have yet to write, or the ending line, or just a few lines of dialogue. That’s magic. That’s power. I know something that no one else knows, and it’s entirely up to me to bring it to life.

And I want to get there. Now. I want to get to that scene, I want to write everything down. I feel there’s no time. Breathing fast and brokenly like a fish out of water, I try my best to write as many words as possible. And I’m afraid. Somehow, I’m afraid I won’t get there. I don’t want for the magic to get lost, to dissipate into the busy murmurs of true life.

But then I have to remind myself that you can only write one word at a time. It’s as simple, as difficult, as painful as that. And I have to let each word lead me to the next. I have to let the words show me the way.

This might sound like crazy talk to you, but, well, I never said I was normal, did I?

Sometimes I feel so much energy rushing through my veins that it paralyses me. I want to get the story out, but I don’t want to get it out one word after another. I want to get it out now. So most times I end up writing nothing.

And it’s strange because we always get there. And at the end of the day, when we re-read what we’ve written, we can’t really tell the difference between what came effortlessly and what came at a great price. You know, the words we had to bleed out of our soul.

One word at a time. One word after another. Slowly, painfully slow sometimes, but words form sentences, sentences form paragraphs, and paragraphs form chapters.

And sometimes we look back and we can’t understand how everything happened…

4 thoughts on “TMM: One Word at a Time

  1. You are not crazy, hahahaha! That is the process, whether feverish or slow it comes one word at a time. Sometimes late at night just before I fall asleep I have a great idea. Then I assure myself there is no way I’d forget it. So paper, pen, flashlight sure helps.

    And being paralyzed is also normal. That’s our ‘cross’ to bear. Well, not literally or spiritually but you get my drift.


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