Young Adult Dark Urban Fantasy Author ~

Posts tagged “Book Writing

Revisions. Listen to the Voice.

You know that feeling you get after you’ve logged in hours revising your novel, and then it dawns on you that you have to scrap chunks of it?

Yeah, I’m there.

I wanted to label it as a block. Pin it down to being “brain tired.” Chalk it up to, “I’ve been working on this piece too long, so now I’m just sick of it.”

Revision notes

Revision notes (Photo credit: jez`)

Reality?

That little voice in my head, the one that helps guide me down these cray writing roads I find myself on, that voice told me something was wrong. And it wasn’t because I was too tired, or blocked. It wasn’t because my story was too ingrained, or that I was sick of it. The voice stopped me in my revision tracks because something was wrong.

Scrap is a harsh word. Rewrite is a more appropriate one, and something I had not anticipated needing to do. But as I’ve said before, sometimes the story simply doesn’t work. Sometimes the ideas in your head don’t play out on paper in the grand scheme. Sometimes you need to rewrite a few chunks, so the rest of the chunks, work.

Listen to your voice. It doesn’t lie, and it won’t lead you astray. If something in your story doesn’t feel right, it’s because it isn’t.


Bright Lights…..Small….Town?

When does that magical day come? The one when you wake up and a voice inside your head says, “Ok, you’re ready now. Go ahead, publish.”

It’s the bright lights, big city illusion. The day of, “Ah…I’m here!” I’m not sure if that day really exists. For anyone.

I am pretty sure though, that no-one can tell you when you’re ready. No voice wakes you up rattling in your psyche to let loose the magical words. I’m afraid we all need to make the, “I’m ready for this,” decision on our own.

Even the big dogs in the industry had to suck it up and go on submission. Many of which were denied plenty before ever being accepted by publishers. Some of whom, even now and by their own admission, aren’t completely convinced of their talent as writers.

As the self published/ebook revolution comes more and more to the forefront, authors and writers have yet another big decision to make; whether or not to go it alone. No agent, no publishing house, no one there to pat you on the back and validate your work. No one to tell you it’s time to go public and it’ll all be ok. It’s just you and maybe a few paper bags for when the hyperventilation sets in as you hit ‘publish’ on Smashwords.

No longer is creating a query letter the main focus when your novel is finished. No longer are writers inundating agents slush piles left and right. Nope. Now, more and more of us are going it alone. No net. And for a plethora of reasons.

The big city, big lights dream seems to have shifted itself over the past few years. Writers are looking to simply be heard. And now they have the means of doing exactly that. We are in the age of bright lights, small town and about now, I’m thinking most of us are feeling pretty alright with that. We have the means of publishing our work and in the grand scheme of things, I believe that it is the ultimate goal. We all hope to be liked, have our words resonate, but at the end of the day, we also feel the need to just be read.

The rest is just glory.


And Away We Go..

First off…As if I do not have enough hair pulling going on with simply trying  write,  I have thrown myself into the twitter bowl. If nothing else, it should be entertaining to watch me crash and burn for a few weeks.

On a positive note, writing picked up steam last night and I was not only able to stomach the first 7 again, but actually made some good edits along the way. I’m on the upside of my carousel ride again…I pray it hangs in for a while.


What’s with the yo-yo?

It’s not just me, I know that. But I swear I’m on some whacked out carousel ride with high lifting horses and low riding carriages that keeps going in circles and will not let me off.

These last few weeks have been awful. Writing wise. I lost my thread, my focus, my concentration, my mind and it’s taking everything I have to get it all back–to make myself finish my final draft.

How many times do you have to hear your favorite song before you hate it? You know the one. That great song. The song that gets replayed so many times you could scream. I’m there. I will throw up if I read my first 7 chapters again.

How in the hell do people write the same novel for… years? I’m guessing at some point they say, well it’s a good as it gets, I can’t look at this anymore.

So…I started reading backwards. You know, from the last paragraph forward. Edit one and move up. So far, it’s working. I’m kind of afraid to say that out loud in fear of jinxing myself. But there seems to be some type of odd symmetry happening. My brain isn’t hearing the same story I’ve gone over more times than I can count. It is seeing and hearing mistakes more clearly though and at this point, I think, editing more productively. So if you are in this most trying place with your writing, give the backward edit a try. Hell, maybe writing from the end could work too.


This isn’t a rush job

(By Shannon9791 via Photobucket)

This is my new mantra. “This isn’t a rush job!” Only I try to say it calmly.

Do you have those days when you wonder if you should scrap it and walk away–or at least toward another project? But then you read a quote or an excerpt and you remember the reason you’re doing this in the first place?  Me too.

There is this blind sort of faith that goes along with writing and finishing a novel. A faith you’re putting into the void in hopes that it will return the favor. As much as my mind seems to have taken a hiatus from any useful thoughts in relation to my (should already be finished) novel, I know I’ll never walk away from it. So in that light, I am attempting to acquire a new look on my writing. Slow and steady wins the race and all that.

In the end, what matters is that I don’t walk away, that I do stay focused (even when it seems impossible–even when that means taking a break) and that I don’t rush it. The ups and downs and backs and forths are tiring. And although I have been going back and forth for a year now with this process, somehow it feels more overwhelming than it ever has. I’m trying to convince myself it’s because this is the Final Draft and therefore, MUST be right. Either way, it isn’t a rush job and like I’ve said before, I’d rather be slow and right, than fast and wrong. So…I’ll be taking a break.


When it’s not writers block or inspiration lack..

…When it’s not procrastination. What the hell is it?

 It’s something–something I can’t put my finger on. Maybe it’s a break. Maybe I need one. Maybe that’s all it is. I literally can not focus. For days, I can’t. Maybe its burn out. Maybe working on something else for a while would help. Suggestions?  Been here before?


100

This is my 100th post. Funny thing about getting to 100 is you begin to run out of interesting or useful things to say. Or maybe it’s me and my crazed novel blocking my flow of thoughts. So here you go:

‘Writing a novel is not merely going on a shopping expedition across the border to an unreal land: it is hours and years spent in the factories, the streets, the cathedrals of the imagination.’ 

-Janet Frame


The blogging biz

 

Blogging

(Image by: Sandman 6210 via Photobucket) 

What to write about today?? Hm….

With the publishing industry now practically insisting that writers have their own blogs and writing formats amassing readers and fans, what choice do we have but to attempt to oblige? And how much time should we commit to these social media outlets? And furthermore, what about the ones of us who aren’t all that–well,….social?

We find ourselves writing about relatively the same topics as others writers because we are all (most of us), trying to reach the same goal. And in that challenge, we need the same information, the same motivations and the understanding that we provide one another.

Some days an article will hit a chord, others maybe it’s an inspirational quote and others still, maybe just a simple shout out of how our novel is moving along–good or bad, when we need a pep talk or a push from our readers. Granted, I’m speaking of course about those of us who are still on this new and steep hill. Other more seasoned writers and published authors seem to have the art of blogging down to a science and help to inspire the rest of us.

So how much time is too much time dedicated to your blog? We are trying to complete our novels, short stories, etc.. How much time should be taken away from that ultimate goal? And what about the social aspect? What draws the interest to amass these ‘fans’ we are hoping for? The fans who, hopefully, are interested in reading our books. When did the “Hey, look at me, look at me!” mentality get all mixed up with the creation of actually writing?

With the enormity of technology, along with E-readers, both publishing companies and self-publishing need help with marketing. Marketing yourself is something you have to do on your own if you choose the self publishing route. Marketing yourself is also apparently (at least in beginning) something you need to do with a traditional publishing company as well. 

Personally, I enjoy my blog. I enjoy talking to and hearing from other writers. I appreciate the feedback and certainly the advice and kind words. Having my blog has helped me to keep moving and that in and of itself is a huge benefit to having it. So I guess we need to view our blogs as aides. Helpful tools to move us toward our goals. But not something to get so caught up in that we forget our aim.

The social stuff, if it bothers you, generally falls into place after a while and if the goal is accomplished and your writing does take off, you’ll need to get used to being at least some what social;) In the meantime, I think checking your blog everyday, posting when you have an idea, or an extra few minutes, and keeping up with your favorite bloggers here and there for motivation and occasional advice, is a good thing. In an industry that is largely solitary, blogging is probably, on the whole, a good way to break free from the isolating shell and breathe a little with the other world. Now…what will I write about…? Hmmm.


The countdown begins.

   calendar April 10

Today is the day. 9 days and counting. The 19th will mark one year since starting my novel. Although I would love to say that my one year mark will also mark my completion date, I can’t. I’m trying to find solace in the fact that numerous writers have taken years to finish their first novel. And of course the obvious fact of having it done right rather than just having it done. Happy 9 Days to go to me.


The Mid-Section

By: ButterCreamPls (Photobucket)

Here’s where things get tricky. I’m going to admit that I’ve slowed down. Way down. I simply can’t find the thread I need. I’ve been searching for it, but it’s missing. Now what? Now…I’m stuck. I thought the break would do me good, clear my head, bring a fresh view but it hasn’t. I’m still in the same spot. And since I can’t find my in, I’ve been staying out. Out of the story that is. You can’t beat a dead horse. I’m wondering if I should try a trick one of my fellow bloggers suggested months ago; start from the ending. It sounded nuts to me at the time, but hey, it can’t hurt. Stuck is stuck and I need a way back.