Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Evolution

The longer I work at this novel, the farther the MC and the situations in it move from being based on me and my life. And I think that's a Good Thing.

Primary example: the opening. As mentioned before, I'm dropping the 3K or so I have written of a first chapter and picking up in a new spot entirely. That cuts out a good portion of the stuff that was loosely based on my own experiences. But I'm not mourning the loss. I think skipping this part makes the story tighter and more readable. Also, in writing that scene, I learned some stuff (history, family details) about the MC. It just sort of flowed out while I was writing and I probably wouldn't have come up with it on my own. So even if I don't use those words in the book, it deepens my understanding of the character and gives me some backstory that I could use later on, if necessary.

It's funny, 'cause one of the things that held me back at first was me wondering how would I come up with all this stuff? And so I based some of it on me and my life, 'cause I could write that. But the more I go on, the more stuff just crops up, and more stuff from real life gets cropped out.

I still have a problem with secondary characters, tho. J's theory is that's because we're so introverted and don't have many minor characters in our own lives. Oh, well. I trust I'll get better with that as I grow as a writer as well.

Miss Snark posted a great link on her blog today. Read the story. It really encouraged me, as I can see some of the steps I've gone/am going through in there. And hooray for cats. Dearest, that's why I let Smokie sleep on top of the desk while I'm writing, as long as he's not knocking stuff off). *g*

This week is a slight hiatus for me, since I'm trying to get all my crits done and back to people waiting for them. (And catch up on sleep, but so far that's been a bust.) I'm also letting the book percolate and waiting for some fresh ideas to come to me. I'll make another strong push at the end of the month and hopefully still manage to hit 20K by DH's birthday.

Oh, I did post my first chunk for critique on the ForumsAmerica workshop, if anyone is interested. That will be the first intro to my characters--and my writing--with any great length that anyone has seen. I'm a little nervous, and a little excited. I still enjoyed re-reading the scene before I posted it last night, though, so hopefully that's a good sign.

Four weeks from tomorrow, I'll be leaving for Surrey. Wow. Heretofore unspoken goal: 25-30K by then, so I can tell the editors and agents I meet that I'm about 1/3 of the way done. Better get on it.

But for now, back to my day job.
(Posting at work, so no Gaidhlig Word for today.)

1 comment:

Jon said...

Good deal. I always feel guilty and uncomfortable when I put too much of my experiences into something.

It feels like cheating.