Friday, March 6, 2009

Are You a Journey or a Destination Person? by Jess Lourey

New-age, find-your-chakra, smell-a-rose philosophy would have us valuing the journey over the destination. If you sense some reluctance there, it's because I'm an impatient person. I'imagem always in a hurry to get somewhere, and when I finally arrive, I scurry off to somewhere else. I WANT to enjoy the journey, but unless I'm on a road trip or reading a book, I'm a seeker by nature, looking forward instead of around.

This is particularly apparent in my writing career. I would rather have a book done and off to my publisher than be writing one. I figured all writers were that way, until I interviewed Janet Evanovich, who told me she enjoys the journey way more than the destination.

Shit. Turns out I'm the weirdo.

Until I started writing Blue Moon. I've had the idea for image this novel in my head for years, but I had no avenue for redemption for the main character, and so no skeleton around which to build the story. Last month, though, her redemption came to me, and the story has literally been writing itself ever since then.

The novel is Minnesota magical realism and is inspired by the strong women in my life and the fascinating research imageof Dr. Bryan Sykes, who compellingly argues in The Seven Daughters of Eve that mitochondrial DNA proves that all human ancestry can be traced back to seven women. We're all related, and there's magic in those genes.

Viva la journey!

And so, do you prefer the journey, or the destination?


Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

I’m a journey type of writer – until I’m close to my deadline. Then I become a big-time destination person.

Writing is novel is a lot like taking a cross-country road trip, stopping at every roadside attraction and Stuckeys along the way until you get to within a few hundred miles of your destination. Then you haul ass to get to the finish, driving all night if you must.

Blue Moon sounds GREAT, Jess!

bsolheim said...

I love the journey while writing. But when I'm working on final edits and ready to pitch to agents and editors, I'm obsessed with the destination. Looking forward to Blue Moon. Beth Solheim

G.M. Malliet said...

Used to be a destination person. Now I'm more conscious of the journey. I think it's called getting old(er).

Paul Lamb said...

"Minnesota magical realism." That alone makes it sound like something I'll want to read!

I'm not sure your breakdown needs to be an "either/or" option. I'm both satisfied to have something finished and eager to get onto something else. I think both sentiments can exist at the same time in the same mind.

G.M. Malliet said...

Jess - I have a feeling this book is going to be big for you. Good luck!

Terri Thayer said...

I'm so excited that you've begun something new. It sounds wonderful. I think that experience of the book writing itself has to do with the fact that this book is so close to your heart.

can't wait to read it.

Jess Lourey said...

Thank you, Sue Ann, and I love the metaphor of writing to a road trip.

Jess Lourey said...

Thank you, Beth! I can't wait to finish that one (see, I'm still a little destination-y--I strive to be more like you and Evanovich and enjoy the journey).

Jess Lourey said...

There are benefits of getting older, eh, Gin? And thank you for posting this blog for me! I'm responding late because I'm on a cruise--somewhere between Florida and Mexico, now. Awww, life's tough. I actually can't wait to get somewhere. :)

Jess Lourey said...

Ah, I like allowing the dichotomy, Paul. I do have a tendency to draw lines where they don't have to be.

Jess Lourey said...

I think you're right, Terri. I'm lucky the idea found me and sparked with stuff I'd been carrying around for years.

G.M. Malliet said...

Just to put my statement about enjoying the journey to the test, we had a 6-hour delay in getting to Hawaii, at LAX.

Arrived safely if in zombie-like state about 3 am local time.