Sunday, May 16, 2010

Writing Fail

I've been pretty scarce around the blogosphere lately. I can lay blame partically on the fact that I was out of town, but I'd be lying if I said that was the complete reason. No, the real reason is I just haven't known what to write, on my blog and in my actual writing. I was in the middle of my third complete rewrite of The Changing Moon, and I realized I still wasn't happy with it. So I shelved it, temporarily. Now that I've got a few days behind me, I think part of the reason was because there just wasn't enough tension. Donald Mass says to put tension on every page, and I wasn't doing that. It was a pretty story, but pretty stories don't sell novels. So, now that I've realized that, I'm going to let it simmer in my brain for a little longer while I work on something else.

That something else is a plot bunny that's been hopping around for a while now. It's a simple coming of age story called Princess with nothing paranormal involved. It's a change for me, but I think that's what I needed.

I did a post a while back on first lines here. So, I thought I'd share with you the (tentative) first line of Princess.

"My father tells stories of the time before the Great Flood, of the expansive cities where corruption danced through the hearts of every man, where fathers let their daughters run wild in the streets, where desire stalked on every corner and shame haunted every mind."

What do you guys do when you love a story, but you find it simply isn't working for you?

Edited to add: Of course as soon as I posted the first line, I changed it. That's now the second line.


Danielle La Paglia said...

There are times when you have to treat it like NaNo and push ahead and other times when you have to let it simmer. The hard part is knowing when to choose which. I've had two projects simmering for awhile and it's time to revisit one with fresh eyes.

I love the first sentence of your new project. It grabs the reader and I want to know what happens next. Good luck with your new adventure!

Julie said...

Danielle is right. Sometimes it's a question of simmer time, sometimes it's just not. I know with Pretty Souls, it took a new set of eyes to look at it and tell me what wasn't working for me to finally get it, but by that point I was fried on the story. IF I go back to it, it'll be to start all over, and I'm not sure I have the heart for that.

On the other hand, last year's NaNo, which I pushed through to get my 50k, got shelved and then re-envisioned this spring. It didn't make the cut for the anthology I subbed to, so I'll be re-working (adding to) it soon to sub elsewhere.

The first line of the new project is very intriguing. I wish you the best with it :)

Jen said...

I put it on the shelf and wait for it to speak to me again. Sometimes it takes weeks or months but it normally always comes back. When you love a story you have to give it time to grow and really work for you, apparently you just need a break!

Good luck on your latest idea! I just recently had one come my way as well!

Angela Addams said...

I like the first (now second line). It's good to break out of your usual writing genre and try something new. I should take my own advice and do that too but the ideas that keep popping into my head are all paranormal. So good luck, sounds like a great start!

carlosn said...

How's it going! I'm a new follower and writer. I am currently going through The Children's Institute of Literature writing course and am on assinment 5. The course is the real deal--my teacher is a very published author. I was like--full speed ahead until assignment 4 and this one--now I've lost my momentum and care and am here to find the love for writing again--by reading your blog, us writers need to support each other. So, my teacher said, when I got stuck on a novel idea--to go back to where you got stuck. I'm stubborn I kept going and what a mess. My story is about a young girl who is an illusionist (like Houdini and Cris Angel) who loses a classmates ring (while making it disapear). Her stepfather also gets rid of some of her stuff and she starts searching around for it, causing trouble. She runs in to a bunch of psychic kids and well, Cris Angel doesn't believe in psychic powers and neither will she, so there will be some conflict there. She is a Ramona Quimby type character. My current lit assignment is: I have to observe children and write about them internally from their point of view and externally, from the 3rd person. Here is a link to my blog--all I have are stories. Check out Zombie Dinner--it got published in the town newspaper on Halloween. My daughter helped me with it a great deal (she was 7 at the time)

Here is a link to a series of agents who look at YA fiction/coming of age stuff That's where I'm submitting too

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