The Chemical Workers’ Song (Process Man)

On Friday, I was given some advice. It’s been quite a while since anyone did this, if I’m honest. That appears to be what happens when you have friends that care about you and want your work to get better. What this means is that this morning I’m here thinking about process.

PROCESS : Sequence of interdependent and linked procedures which, at every stage, consume one or more resources (employee time, energy, machines, money) to convert inputs (data, material, parts, etc.) into outputs. These outputs then serve as inputs for the next stage until a known goal or end result is reached.

I like definitions. They help me visualise an end goal, and understand what is required of me. I’d never really considered my writing as process either, but undoubtedly it is, and what Friday demonstrated to me was twofold: sometimes, talking through a process with someone who has no notion of it is VERY useful, and often what I think needs to be shown as working isn’t actually necessary at all. However, without process, everything is an unstructured and horrendous mess. What I am developing, I now realise, is an extremely stylised approach to writing process which suits my visual mind far better than just writing everything down and hoping for the best. In fact, without the musical cues I’m being able to invent for crucial scenes and dialogue? I would be completely lost.

This was the roadblock in my Bond fiction until Friday. Here is the song that my mind could not move past. However, thanks to the conversation I had over beers? That’s no longer the case. In fact, a great deal of progress has been made since Saturday morning. This is why I was up at 7am yesterday morning, writing something that is growing and evolving in my head at a worrying rate. That’s not a BAD worry, I should add, but just something I am fighting to contain and deal with as satisfactorily as I should. However, knocking down this wall reveals further obstructions, and this becomes a fight in different places. Process however dictates that I know a bit more about demolition techniques than I did in Thursday night, so breaking those walls down will at least be easier.

Mostly I need to be grateful I picked the right friend to have the beers with. Because if I wasn’t with her, none of this would have happened to begin with. So, thank you for the picture of Daniel Craig in blue swimming trunks on Friday night, and please feel free to yell at me over process whenever the Hell you like.

This is an effective technique to make me think.