I always consider myself a pretty easy going guy. I try not to get too intense. I’m at the age where being laid back is definitely a good thing, especially when you have the extra pounds I do. Even when working on my writing goals this year, I’ve been calm, considered and rational.
I’m noticing that, historically speaking, calm, considered and rational isn’t when I get the best results.
Argh. I’m doing the very first thing Nathan says not to do!
Revenant my WIP starts out like this. My main character wakes up. There’s a very good reason for this, in my opinion. It establishes something important about my main character.
I’ll give it some thought, but I doubt I’ll change it. I’ll just hope it falls into the area that Nathan Bransford’s thinking about when he says: “Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying you can’t use one of these openings or that there aren’t good books that start this way.”
I will do what he says next:
“I am saying that you should think once, twice, and five thousand times about using these.”
My wonderful wife caught wind of this and punted it my way today and we’re planning on doing it! November comes early this year! 50K in July!
I figure I’ll take one of my ideas on deck for now, and the other in November (I’m a glutton for punishment). The timing is perfect. I’ve been itching to get into high gear with something fresh. It works for my wife as well. She does NaNo with me every year (and last year put me to shame) and this summer is the perfect time for her, no courses to work on!
So, the assignment is to get an outline ready for July 1st.
I have a 4 day weekend coming up, with Monday all to myself. I intend to spend half of the day revising Revenant (and progressing in my online course from Holly Lisle) and spend the other half brainstorming ideas, plots and maybe outlining.
I made the mistake of gearing up late last November and when the 1st came around I was completely unprepared and I failed utterly.
I’ve decided that I’d like to either form or join a small writing group. I’ve been reading and hearing about the various experiences that people have with them (good and bad) and I can’t help but feel that this would be a good thing to be part of.
With the right group, it would be an encouragement to write and the feedback would be useful. Giving my own critique is a valuable skill to learn. Learning to receive critique would be a priceless skill to learn as well. Ideally, it would be great to have a group of 4 or 5 writers with similar aspirations getting together for an afternoon/evening maybe once a month and helping each other progress and reach goals.
Sadly, the friends that I would love to form a group with have extremely hectic schedules and/or the logistics don’t quite mesh. I’m not really enthused about meeting with a group of complete strangers (there aren’t many writer oriented events on my radar that I could attend to expand my social circles).
As a last resort, I think I’ll try and form an online group, but I find this loses the immediacy of something local.
I was listening to a great interview with one of my favorite authors: Guy Gavriel Kay on the Adventures in SciFi Publishing podcast and one topic of discussion was the artistic differences between writing a trilogy and writing a stand alone novel. The commercial differences were also covered.
Kay stated (and this is NOT an exact quote, I’m paraphrasing) that readers as a whole tend to be conservative and not seek change therefore commercially trilogies do well but writing is an art and that means change. Stories change, people change.
I kind of lost track at this point since some moron in a Honda Odyssey started driving erratically, but it did get me thinking (once traffic was smooth again) about the art of writing.
I am in the throes of a conundrum. It involves this year’s NaNoWriMo. I am starting to think about VERY early because I promised myself that I wouldn’t repeat the complete and utter failure of NaNoWriMo 2010.
It will. not. happen.
So, this means that I will hit October prepared and eager for November 1st. I will have an outline to work with and copious notes. I will work on something “original” (my definition of original in this context is a work that is NOT a sequel of something I’ve already done, isn’t another attempt at a story I’ve never completed, and isn’t fanfic). This attempt doesn’t have to be something aimed at eventual publication (option A is definitely not, option B could be).
I’m having a LOT of trouble making a decision. I have a while yet, so it’s not like I’m hearing the Jeopardy theme or anything, but still, it bothers me enough that I find it’s worth posting about.
I know I don’t have a ton of readers, but for those who DO see this, I put up a poll. I’d love it if you participate, call your friends and get them to participate. I make no guarantees to follow the outcome, but it might sway me to one side or another.
Note: The full description of each option is after the cut.