The Long Road Ahead

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The last couple of months have been incredibly busy. The release of The Fiddler’s Gun and the Christmas season at the Rabbit Room kept me ragged and tired for the month of December, and January has been filled with the rigors and long hours of my day job where I’m away from home and often too tired at the end of the day to get my mind in the right place for serious writing.

With the arrival of February, there’s an end in sight. I’ll be back home in Nashville soon and hope to have a few weeks, if not a month or so, to really buckle down get some work done. Fiddler’s Green, currently at around 50,000 words, is about half-written. With my typical writing goal of 1000-1500 words a day that means I’ve still got well-over a month of non-stop, butt-in-chair work to do just to get it all down and ready for rewrites, revisions, and edits. My hope is to put it in your hands by Christmas so I really need to get busy. I might have to bump that word goal up into the 2,000 neighborhood.

Experience has taught me that the absolute enemy of a writer is inconsistency. Writing, and more accurately, long form prose, requires a schedule. It requires the writer to put words on the page on a regular and predictable basis. It’s like the famous quote: “I only write when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at 9am sharp.” It’s a labor that relies on a well-exercised muscle and when that muscle falls into atrophy it’s no quick task to bring it back up to operating level. For the past months, I’ve rarely put the writing muscles to use and now that I’m sitting here trying to flex them again, it shows.

The words you are reading right now are, in some ways, little more than procrastination. In other ways, however, they are the stretch before the marathon.

When I get back to Nashville, I intend to run. Time to write. And I’m looking forward to it. The road ahead leads through some dark and beautiful country and the miles may leave my feet blistered and swollen. Wish me well; Fin’s gone far astray and I’m anxious to bring her home.

Pete Peterson is the author of the Revolutionary War adventure The Fiddler’s Gun and its sequel Fiddler’s Green. Among the many strange things he’s been in life are the following: U.S Marine air traffic controller, television editor, art teacher and boatwright at the Florida Sheriffs Boys Ranch, and progenitor of the mysterious Budge-Nuzzard. He lives in Nashville with his wife, Jennifer, where he’s the Executive Director of the Rabbit Room and Managing Editor of Rabbit Room Press.


4 Comments

  1. Paula Shaw

    LIke I said before Pete, some things are just well worth the wait. Along they, however, please know you’ll be prayed up, and down, and sideways. . . well, you get the picture. Be encouraged, and rest assured that the gift within you cannot help but come out. An example of that is that when my son (now 18) was 6, he decided he was going to quit piano lessons. It broke my heart, because I knew even then that he had a gift within that not many have. I phoned his piano teacher and talked to her through my tears, and she (being the wise person she is) laughed and told me that he won’t be gone for long. She said, “The music is inside him, and it can’t help but come out.” She was right. He went back to piano after a few short months, and is now 18, has done so much in music, and is an accomplished pianist and violist. It just seems to drip off of him. He can’t help it, much like with you and your writing. You just can’t help it. It’s a gift within you that, when it comes out, is a beautiful and lyrical stream of story-telling. Be encouraged. Looking forward to spending time with Fin as her story moves on to “The Fiddler’s Green”.

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