Monday, 24 June 2013

Writing progress report

I haven't done much writing this week but I've solved an important question concerning places and their names. The change of name of one place, in particular, triggered the change in its entire history. I'm very excited about it.    

Monday, 17 June 2013

Writing progress report

Once again, having read the piece I'd been working on to my critique partner, I discovered gaps and holes that I had forgotten to fill with necessary substance. I have to keep track of so many things while working on my fantasy WIP that I inevitably lose sight of some of them - until I've written the whole scene out, read it aloud and spotted a mistake (i.e., my critique partner did - she's extremely sharp-eyed and awfully nitpicking; she has a knack for asking important questions that make me explore directions I wouldn't otherwise).

I've decided to go back to the beginning of the second part I'm working on at the moment (right now its word count stands at about 13K) and rewrite the whole thing. I also spent much of my time revising the original story, sending the first three chapters to the editor and hoping that she would contact me. I hope that she's OK, because she never answered back, but her silence gave me an impetus to do something I couldn't find enough courage to do for a long time: I'm taking "Almendra: A Fairy-Tale" off my publisher's website and other places where it could have been purchased. It's time to face the fact that it's just not good enough for publication (that not everything that we write is!) and I should never have published it in its current state in the first place.

At the moment I don't know if I should ever get back to it. I'm not going to say never, because it has a certain power over me that compels me to come back to it, but it has too many problems: plot holes, things appearing out of nowhere without any explanation whatsoever, inconsistencies, illogicalities... But, with all that, I still like it a lot and I had high hopes that someone else would like it too. Alas, no... It was the first "book" that I wrote (in fact, it's no more than a novella) and it's clear now that I didn't really know what I was doing while writing it, but I've learnt a lot since then and I hope that new "Almendra" will turn out just fine.

Question of the Week: Does the number of discarded drafts indicate how good or bad a writer is? What if I have a dozen discarded drafts of the same story and I'm still struggling with it? What does it say about me as a writer? That I'm bad at what I love doing, because I can't get it right, no matter how many times I try?

Monday, 10 June 2013

Writing progress report

After the meeting with my critique partner, that takes place every fortnight, I realized that the bit I'd been working on for the past three weeks or so needs much more work still. Therefore, I went back and rewrote parts of it that we decided needed changes made to them but I haven't finished yet. Here I'd been thinking that it's all good and then I printed it out and started reading it aloud and realized that it was raw and wanting... Suddenly, it struck me how much I hadn't included that should have been included, how many things had escaped my notice!

I've also been contemplating why exactly I'm in such a rush to finish the book. It's not like I have hordes of fans waiting for the next instalment to hit the shelves with bated hearts. So there's no rush and no pressure. And chances that I'll ever have hordes of fans are - well - not big. I have fun writing it and I do it for myself and I love the experience. Besides, I had rushed into publishing "Almendra: A Fairy-Tale" and it was a complete disaster. So - no rushing things this time around - no matter how much I want to move forward and write "The End"! If I need to go back and rewrite something - I do that - and rewrite it as many times as it takes for me to be satisfied with it! Sometimes, I do have to remind myself that.

Question of the Week: How do you determine when to write exactly what someone says or when to report it? Are there any rules? What is to be my guide in making the right decision? Why is it that sometimes I put down a full conversation and at others I simply report what someone says?

Monday, 3 June 2013

Writing progress report

I'm working on the second part of my fantasy novel, based on my novella "Almendra: A Fairy-Tale". (I still haven't heard from the editor about the edits she proposes to introduce to the original story - I expect she is properly horrified by now and wishes to take her offer back.) It's an on-the-road part and it gives me some grief, because I'm not good at describing the journey and pushing the story forward. Nevertheless, I'm doing my best!