So happy this morning! Why? Well, there are lots of reasons.
First, I woke up this morning to find these awesome links in my blog reader (okay, a few are oldie goodies):
- Creating Compelling Characters by Amparo Ortiz
- Safe and Somewhere in Between by Kiersten White (about sex in YA)
- Sleep Brain by Lindsay Scott (aka Isabella Morgan) (about plot and characters keeping you awake)
- Across the Universe Epic Contest of Epic by Beth Revis (you still have a week to enter this awesome Christmas contest!)
- 52 Books in 52 Weeks Challenge by Michelle McLean (summing up the past year of reading like a mad woman)
- December's Mystery Agent contest winners were announced, in case you were absent that day. :)
- The Token Geek and Grabthar's Hammer on The Best Damn Creative Writing Blog by Yours Truly (Yes, I am specially qualified to write about geek characters, thank you for asking.)
- Ooh, this just in: CRITTER IS UP FOR AUCTION! If you don't know yet about Critter, check out my interview with his current owner, Christy Evers.
And the other reason I'm so happy this morning is that my Work-In-Progress is finally going someplace again!
This is my top secret, high concept, epic urban fantasy story that's been kicking my butt since I started thinking about writing it. I've started it eight total times (seriously, eight drafts of first chapters in my folder). Each time, it felt off. A few times, I thought I'd finally found the MC's voice, or decided whose POV to narrate from, but something always happened that made me feel wrong about it (like an agent tweeting that dual POV was hard to do and newbie writers shouldn't attempt it, which led me to wonder if I'm still a newbie writer if I don't have an MFA). Or sometimes I'd get a wake up call from a CP or family member who'd tell me the voice changed drastically from chapter 1 to chapter 2, or that the MC wasn't likable.
After several false starts, I decided to tackle this one for Nanowrimo. (ahem. That didn't quite work out.) I made important progress, but eventually resigned myself to the fact that this story isn't the writes-itself kind.
It's not even the write-in-a-month kind. (I love that kind and have written two such books, so I can feel the difference.) This book is the labor-until-you-bleed kind, the hold-my-calls-and-call-a-babysitter-because-this-is-going-to-take-a-while kind. You get the idea.
Even though it would be easier to dump this story and pick up one of my other ideas that just might be a writes-itself story, I can't let this one go. There's something SO satisfying about taming a difficult story. Each conquered plot twist and revealed character quirk or strength is cause for celebration.
So today I'm celebrating! Because I'm 91 pages into it after months of struggle, and even though it is still far from perfect (or complete), it's getting there!
Yep. I'm taming this story, one heart-wrenching scene at a time.
Have you ever tamed a story? Or do you find yourself gravitating toward the stories that tell themselves? Any advice for me?
Don't forget to join us for a New Year's Revisions Blog Party on January 1st. Sign up today. :)