I have to lay blame squarely at Terence’s feet for a least part of this. I’ve been writing for ages, though admittedly I feel as I’ve only gotten out of “hobby writing” since 2010 or so. ‘Writer’ has been part of how I identify since before pretty much everything else. ‘Human’ maybe has been around longer. It certainly predates ‘Poseidon’s’ as part of my identity.
I’ve used writing as a tool to bring me closer to Him, to ease the communication between u/Us. Before I’d developed any meditation practices or skills, writing was how that exchanged happened. It was the first way we spoke to one another — or perhaps, the first way I spoke to Him, and the first way I received His words, after the initial first contact. Beyond that, I learned pretty early on that regular writing of fiction was The Most Important Tool I had to help keep me aware of the multitude of worlds I interact with. Writing fiction helped me keep my awareness open, and it helped keep me from being too much of a pedant when it came to certain things, like: how exactly is this or that other thing real? What are the building blocks? How can I pin it down?
Writing fiction, writing the stories that others bring to me for the telling without a doubt helped my relationship with my gods flow. And, I’ve written fiction for Poseidon before. Pretty early on in the marriage, in fact. But, I never really wrote it with Him.
It is only recently that I’ve even begun to make Him part of the pre-writing process with stories that don’t involve Him. Story bouncing, pre-writing planning. I don’t outline in any great detail, but I do like to let the stories “steep” so that when I sit down to get them onto the page I have an idea of where they’re going. Historically that has involved story-bouncing with a few of my writerly type friends, but lately I simply do not have the time to put into that sort of correspondence, and Poseidon stepped up. “I’ll listen to the story-bouncing.” Because, often all I need is just to talk the ideas out to see the weak points or to see what’ll work, etc. He’s not taking the place of a muse, exactly, because . . . well, because.
Up until November was about to start, I was pretty sure I was going to be working on a particular project (Tangled Roots), but then Poseidon was all, “Hey, last NaNo was about what I wanted you to write . . .” and suddenly, Poseidon: a Narrative was born. (Damn it).
I write mostly on the weekends. At the close of today, I want to have 40k words finished on this project. I want to go into next week with only needing another 10k to finish. I’m not there — I’m only at 32k right now. And I’m feeling frustrated because I didn’t plan for this at all, and the draft is disorderly and messy and I wasn’t even sure which stories were going to be included. (I knew what stories *I* wanted included. So far? None of those have made the cut) I am daunted by the Big Stories, and with most of these I feel like I’ve almost written what I needed to write.
Yesterday was a hard writing day. I struggled for every single word I produced, and I already know most of them are not staying and it’s hard to know that and not feel dejected. I moped a bit yesterday. “This sucks. This is not working. Why the hell am I doing this? No one is going to want to read this. What am I thinking??” And, because He is generous, He tolerated my moping and belly aching for about an hour. And then?
Then I am called to be honest. So, when I’m honest? I’m frustrated, because I did not plan for this at all, and because going into it I had a totally different idea of how this was going to go. I wanted intimate exploration of lesser known stories. He wants, apparently, the creation and ordering of the heavens as viewed through a Poseidon lens. I’m frustrated that it’s only now that I have a handle on the stories that are being included — roughly eight, but it depends on how you are counting, because some of them over lap and some other stories are briefly touched upon. I’m not delving deep into researching historically held beliefs too much — not to the point of discovering where certain ideas come from and when — because this is fiction and because I want them to be inspired by the the stories from the past and not so much retellings strictly based upon them, if that makes sense. I’ve reread some Hesiod, and I’ve reread some Homeric Hymns, but beyond that I’m staying away from research. I’m looking for inspiration and not so much corroboration with ancient sources. So, yeah, frustrated. But also?
I’ve written 32k words on a completely unplanned project since Nov. 1st. Most of the words are keepers, so basically I’m going to end November with a skeletal framework with much flesh clinging to it already. I’ve written 32k words with Poseidon, and this is new for me. He has had direct input. He has cajoled me when I’ve gotten to serious. He has supported me when I’ve gotten down. He has scolded when it’s been necessary, and He’s kept me going. This has brought u/Us closer, and I feel all the stronger for it. He need not have this much input in my writing going forward, but at the same time, should He want to? He’s welcome to. Writing is such a huge part of who I am — why wouldn’t Poseidon be involved? Why wouldn’t I include Him?
And there are so many more stories I want to write regarding Him . . . . I already know Poseidon Mousgetes won’t make it into this collection, but oh, do I want to explore that further, too.
NaNoWriMo is hard. I’m learning this year that I need more planning going in, because it just makes me feel less overwhelmed and out of control. Good to know for next year. For now? Ploughing ahead!