Kindle Forum banner
1 - 5 of 5 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
281 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Spring is here and once again the oncoming nice weather will test my resolve to finish my latest novel. I find it especially difficult to keep focus when it’s a beautiful, sunny seventy-degree day outside. But as an artist I must ignore the temptation to enjoy the outside. When I am working on a first draft (as I’m doing now) I find that I can only concentrate on creating original material when I’m sitting at my desk. Something about that particular space and mindset unlocks my imagination greater than any other. In a way, I’m a slave to my own setting.

I have no problem revising second or third drafts from anywhere in the world; on plane, sitting on my deck, or being in a hotel room; but that first draft must always be written in this particular space. I guess it’s where my muse likes to hang out.

Despite a brief attack of writer’s block (my first ever), and several trips to the hospital (It’s all chronicled in my blog), the first book in my planned dystopian series is coming along. I reached 25,000 words yesterday which is just a few thousand less than I had planned in my timeline. The story is coming together well, the characters are shaping up nicely, and the futuristic setting is awesome. Now, if I only had a title for the work.

This is the first book I’ve ever started without having a title in mind. Perhaps, that’s because I have been thinking about the plot of this one for so long that the words and story came onto the page before I even had a solid idea of what to call it. I had a few titles in mind, but when I searched Amazon I found that there were already books that had those titles. As a writer, I highly recommend that you search Amazon so that your book title is unique in the world and therefore easier to find when googled. I’ll keep my thinking cap on until the right one hits me.

As I stare out my office window at the beautiful day I am going to be missing, I can’t help but wonder if all this sacrificing is worth it? Will I go to my deathbed regretting the time I spent writing rather than enjoying the wonders of nature? Will I grow old and angry that I didn’t take advantage of every nice day offered out to me? I don’t think so. For long after I’m gone my books will still be here and readers will be able to enjoy my stories. In a way, I’m sacrificing a few beautiful days to immortalize myself in the human condition.

So, I’ll lower the shades to keep sunlight from stinging my eyes and get down to the business of finishing this first draft. I may miss out on the day, but the joy I get typing away at my keyboard greatly offsets it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
281 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Writing a novel

Do you know if you write a page a day that within one year you will have written a book? How many times have I heard that one? If that one book takes a year to write then the revision process would have to take many years. Truth is, writing a first draft is the easy part.

I can usually belt one out in a few months. But the revision; forgetta’bout it. That’s the time consuming stuff, though I am getting better at it as I get older (and hopefully wiser). I’m also getting better as a writer. Ideas come more easily after so many years of living in my ideas and the process of getting them on paper is less time-consuming.

For my new novel, I’m finding the plot twists are coming naturally and I’ve had quite a few ‘aha!’ moments in the last few days. Here’s a little secret about starting a new novel. Don’t worry about the perfect first chapter or getting that perfect first line. Just start jotting down the story. Through most of my books, I’ve completed about half of the novel when I usually go back and write new intro’s that incorporate the original intro’s, if that makes any sense.

For instance, I thought I had the perfect intro for my latest. A shocking, get-right-into-the-action first chapter, when a few hours ago I came up with a much better start. My original beginning is now chapter two. But, that intro catapulted me into the story so I could build a base. As of this post, I hit the 15,000 word mark on my new novel and have a pile of notes about how the novel will progress. Now, it’s just the nuts and bolts of getting the remainder down on paper.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
281 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sleep well manuscript

It finally happened. I reached the end of my creative juices on my latest novel. At 25,000 words in, I’ve had enough. The book started well enough. I had a great idea and I feverishly wrote the first draft in under three weeks. I let it sit for a few days while I visited the Jersey Shore and then pulled it back onto the screen anxious and excited to begin the revision process. And then thunk!

Plagued by writer’s block for the last two weeks, I’ve been spending my morning writing time agonizing over the draft. The story is strong, the characters lively, and the setting fantastic… so what’s my problem?

Perhaps, it’s the oncoming nice weather, or the fact that I’ve come up with another new, fresh idea for a book (a philosophical thriller). I don’t know. But what I do know after writing twelve novels, nine of which are published, is that when I lose interest in a project it only results in flat writing and a boring story if I continue. I learned this lesson the hard way after writing three novels that I struggled to finish over a span of years only to realize that they weren’t very good. A combine twenty-seven months of work shoved into a closet drawer for eternity.

There’s nothing worse than realizing the drive to continue this book is dwindling and the joy of writing this book is waning away. It’s a good book by all standards (great plot, action, and suspense) except my own. As the itch to start a new project tickles in my mind, I feel both sad and relived (because I’m only three months into this project and haven’t wasted too much time) that this latest novel needs an incubation period before I continue with the revisions. I think that’s what separates the consummate writer from the wannabe; knowing when to move on.

So, as I put my latest manuscript to rest in the drawer with the others for who knows how long, I’m feeling the excitement, anxiousness, and commitment of starting yet another project. Writers get better with time and experience, and although my latest novel may never be finished or may become a bestseller in the future, I realized for my own sanity that for now, I need a new world to live in and new characters to meet.

Sleep well my unfinished manuscript, may you someday see the light of day again and come fully to fruition. For now, it’s time to start another new novel. I can feel my fingertips tingling already.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,285 Posts
Neil Ostroff said:
Sleep well manuscript

It finally happened. I reached the end of my creative juices on my latest novel. At 25,000 words in, I've had enough. The book started well enough. I had a great idea and I feverishly wrote the first draft in under three weeks. I let it sit for a few days while I visited the Jersey Shore and then pulled it back onto the screen anxious and excited to begin the revision process. And then thunk!

Plagued by writer's block for the last two weeks, I've been spending my morning writing time agonizing over the draft. The story is strong, the characters lively, and the setting fantastic… so what's my problem?

Perhaps, it's the oncoming nice weather, or the fact that I've come up with another new, fresh idea for a book (a philosophical thriller). I don't know. But what I do know after writing twelve novels, nine of which are published, is that when I lose interest in a project it only results in flat writing and a boring story if I continue. I learned this lesson the hard way after writing three novels that I struggled to finish over a span of years only to realize that they weren't very good. A combine twenty-seven months of work shoved into a closet drawer for eternity.

There's nothing worse than realizing the drive to continue this book is dwindling and the joy of writing this book is waning away. It's a good book by all standards (great plot, action, and suspense) except my own. As the itch to start a new project tickles in my mind, I feel both sad and relived (because I'm only three months into this project and haven't wasted too much time) that this latest novel needs an incubation period before I continue with the revisions. I think that's what separates the consummate writer from the wannabe; knowing when to move on.

So, as I put my latest manuscript to rest in the drawer with the others for who knows how long, I'm feeling the excitement, anxiousness, and commitment of starting yet another project. Writers get better with time and experience, and although my latest novel may never be finished or may become a bestseller in the future, I realized for my own sanity that for now, I need a new world to live in and new characters to meet.

Sleep well my unfinished manuscript, may you someday see the light of day again and come fully to fruition. For now, it's time to start another new novel. I can feel my fingertips tingling already.
A few months ago I might have argued that you just have to finish that damn story and not start anything else, or go on anymore vacations, until it's done. And then I hit a wall with a book I committed to writing - that it turns out I didn't really want to write. I got 40k words into it before I just had to stop. It was very demoralizing and sobering. I questioned whether I'd lost my mojo, or worse, my ability to write anything worthwhile. I started my next-in-line project with great trepidation. But then it flowed, not fast, but slow at first, eventually picking up steam. I finished it on time and it's gotten great reviews. So I hadn't lost my mojo and I still had the ability to write an engaging story.

Lesson learned: this is a business and you have to treat it like a job - go to work each workday and work. But that being said, it's also a creative process, and if the creativity isn't flowing for one project, maybe it's worth taking a look at another one. But never walk away and do nothing and accept defeat, because for me at least, I think that would lead to self-doubt, and paralysis brought on by unreasonable fear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,266 Posts
Neil Ostroff said:
Spring is here and once again the oncoming nice weather will test my resolve to finish my latest novel. I find it especially difficult to keep focus when it's a beautiful, sunny seventy-degree day outside. But as an artist I must ignore the temptation to enjoy the outside. When I am working on a first draft (as I'm doing now) I find that I can only concentrate on creating original material when I'm sitting at my desk. Something about that particular space and mindset unlocks my imagination greater than any other. In a way, I'm a slave to my own setting.

I have no problem revising second or third drafts from anywhere in the world; on plane, sitting on my deck, or being in a hotel room; but that first draft must always be written in this particular space. I guess it's where my muse likes to hang out.

Despite a brief attack of writer's block (my first ever), and several trips to the hospital (It's all chronicled in my blog), the first book in my planned dystopian series is coming along. I reached 25,000 words yesterday which is just a few thousand less than I had planned in my timeline. The story is coming together well, the characters are shaping up nicely, and the futuristic setting is awesome. Now, if I only had a title for the work.

This is the first book I've ever started without having a title in mind. Perhaps, that's because I have been thinking about the plot of this one for so long that the words and story came onto the page before I even had a solid idea of what to call it. I had a few titles in mind, but when I searched Amazon I found that there were already books that had those titles. As a writer, I highly recommend that you search Amazon so that your book title is unique in the world and therefore easier to find when googled. I'll keep my thinking cap on until the right one hits me.

As I stare out my office window at the beautiful day I am going to be missing, I can't help but wonder if all this sacrificing is worth it? Will I go to my deathbed regretting the time I spent writing rather than enjoying the wonders of nature? Will I grow old and angry that I didn't take advantage of every nice day offered out to me? I don't think so. For long after I'm gone my books will still be here and readers will be able to enjoy my stories. In a way, I'm sacrificing a few beautiful days to immortalize myself in the human condition.

So, I'll lower the shades to keep sunlight from stinging my eyes and get down to the business of finishing this first draft. I may miss out on the day, but the joy I get typing away at my keyboard greatly offsets it.
I have to say, I'm having trouble focusing on filling out forms for my publisher, should be calling a store to set up a booksigning, and trying to think about how to promote my new book. This is the view from my front porch right now. Plus, I've been on the board like an hour. Must pull self away from Kindleboard. ;)

 
1 - 5 of 5 Posts
Top