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THE THREE D'SPosted Friday, April 1, 2011, at 7:22 AM
In writing circles it's known as "The Three Ds," and that's the Dream, the Desire and the Determination. Of those three, which would you say is most important?
As far as writing your book goes, determination is the most important factor. You can have the dream to write a book. You can have the desire. But if you don't have the gritty determination to see it through to the end, the other two elements really won't amount to much.
Plenty of people have a book idea in them. Do you have the same plan that so many do to one day write a book? You might even start it. But if you don't have the determination to stick with it, to get past the thrilling early stage when you're full of enthusiasm and can't wait to get to work on it every day, to get through the part in the middle that tends to sag and is less exciting to write, then your manuscript will end up in a drawer somewhere, soon abandoned entirely as you go on to other things.
You don't want your creation to lie about, half-formed and forgotten, do you? What a sad end to that brilliant idea you once had.
But if you do finish it, even just a rough first draft, you've already accomplished more than what 90% of the people who start a book manage to do. And it's a wonderful feeling, believe me. There's such a sense of accomplishment when you get to the end of that first draft. You'll feel like Leonardo DiCaprio at the bow of the Titanic, shouting, "I'm king of the world!" OK, maybe the Titanic isn't the best analogy, but you know what I mean.
So go ahead and dream about writing. When you're ready to get serious about it, that's when it's time to get to work.
Now I'm going to say a word about the title of this blog, because I really agonized over it even though I said I wouldn't obsess about making every sentence perfect. I wrote the title as "THE THREE D'S" with an apostrophe in a nonpossessive use. This is very occasionally acceptable to avoid confusion with a word, such as "She got all A's on her report card." The title "THE THREE DS," without an apostrophe, just didn't look right to me, especially in a title that's all caps. If I were writing it as a lower case title - "The Three Ds" - that looks a little better and I think I'd be OK with it, but I started these blog titles in all caps and want to keep them that way. In researching this online I found examples and arguments for both uses.
What do you think?
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Jean Tennant has been writing professionally for more than 30 years. Beginning with short stories, newspaper and magazine articles, she eventually branched out to full-length work, with several novels published by Warner Books, Kensington and Silhouette. Now the owner of Shapato Publishing, LLC, in Everly, Iowa, she teaches writers' workshops throughout the Midwest, for which her schedule can be seen at: www.jeantennant.com. Jean lives in Everly with her husband, Grover Reiser, and their dogs, Kirby and Dakota. Favorite quote: "Outside of a dog, man's best friend is a book. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read." Groucho Marx.