<blockquote class=”twitter-tweet” lang=”en”>
“Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion” – Jack Kerouac.
— Book Quotes (@BookQuotesHere) April 29, 2014
I have done the #1k1hr thing and agree with the quote which generally says a writer is miserable writing, not writing and the only agreeable state is “just having written”. I kept my head down and got it done. I am taking a quick break now to answer the call of nature, drink coffee and think about how to overcome a big narrative issue while I hang out the washing.
The issue is that the story is being told by the main character to her classmates and teacher who have been mocking her for turning up late to class looking dishevelled. She has had an adventure in another realm on the way to school and having fallen off a giant bee her dress is torn and she has bruising to the face. If you have read CS Lewis you will know that time works differently when you pass through doors to other worlds. Therefore it is not a problem that she is only a couple of minutes late having had several months adventures elsewhere. The problem is . . . why is her face and uniform a mess? The fall happened about 24 hours into the visit, so I could either erase the reference to it thinking it should be healed but I kind of like it’s reveal and the effect it has on the disbelieving classmates.
If she was to return and begin telling her classmates the story at the END of the story ie tell the whole adventure in one go she should either be wearing her school uniform neat and as it was when she left the house before entering a swirling vortex, or whatever clothes she was wearing when she passed back through the doorway to our world. And her face should either be as it was BV (Before Vortex) or possibly with a pink scar but no bruising, having healed over a 6-8 weeks. I am breaking from Narnia Tradition by there being any physical evidence of any adventures had in other worlds.
I think the best option is one I was not expecting which is that she passes back and forth a couple of times, possibly just the twice. This would however mean that I would have to now write what happened when she got home, having been slightly altered by the experiences in other world, but before the final transformative journey. The only thing about this is that it would give me an opportunity to explore the “real world” relationship between the girl and her mother which I had hoped to make more subtle.
Anyhoo, lets see what comes of it. I am determined to wrestle this beast into a first draft but it keeps turning into a bogart. You let it out of the mind closet and you never know what you’ll find. Riddikulus!
Its easy to get miserable when you’re trying to mine your own brain for treasures.
There’s a place I like to go . . .
I have been writing “The Story” for probably close to 14 years now and it has been through so many incarnations that I can’t believe I am still working on the first draft. And agonising over it. I have to agree with Hemmingway that writing is easy, all you have to do is sit down and bleed. The trouble is I have never been into cutting. Keep strum has always been my motto which I think accounts for a lot of my writer’s block. Also procrastination. I just spent 10 minues checking online South African slang guides for the spelling of “strum/stroom” only to find it doesn’t exist, but I am sure it means to keep quiet about something.
Anyway, back to the purpose of this post. I have decided to treat this writing of “The Story” as a first draft, and my laptop is going to get pretty messy as it gets bled all over.
With my Monday writing sprint team as inspiration (being completed on Tuesday to dramatic and pointless ambulance ride and hospital stay but that’s a whole other story), and the promise from more successful authors that
I just have to bleed my way through the “first draft” stage. I have the upmost confidence in the story and what I want it to be, I just have to build a bridge from here to the sublime.
Ok, back to it now and let’s do this shit!
I’ve joined a closed Facebook group called the Monday Writing Sprint and basically I spent the first of my 2 blessed child-free hours laying about in bed, half recovering from a tummy bug, half pinning on Pintrest. So I had the sense to realise that if I was well enough to pin I was probably well enough to “research” in an upright position. Well between reading Shannon Hale’s advice on writing a graphic novel, reading reviews of and ordering appropriate graphic novels and just a teensy bit of Facebooking I feel that I may have stumbled upon THE ANSWER, and also, simultaneously completely gone down the wrong track. I have left myself with 4 minutes to write this post but the short and the short of it is that Isa Ines, the story I have been “writing” for 14 years possibly works best as a graphic novel. Do I read graphic novels? No. Well I used to. I have done in the past and really maybe that’s part of what is influencing my writerly voice. the problem is that are graphic novels more difficult to get into than picture books? Maybe but I really think if it works best as a GN maybe I just have to do it, stuff the sales. in my 54 minutes of research I have also come to the conclusion that GNs maybe discuss the type of theme that I am looking to explore: eg https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13542990-marbles and https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17214302-jane-the-fox-and-me this may mean more competition, but also this may be the genre that my intended audience is already reading.
Lots to ponder, or is it just a super great excuse to procrastinate?!?! I will ask Kate Forsyth on 10 May! Exciting
Excuse lack of editing. 4 minutes of writing! Yay! Ok, deadlines are flexible.