So, for various reasons, I stopped sharing my in-progress drafts. I won’t go into why; I’ll just mention that trolls can take many forms. Sometimes, they even pretend to be old friends…
I did continue to write – not every day, but close to it (poor trolls; they’ll be sad), and I frequently have been hitting my goal of 6 days a week. With a teething baby, many times my writing time has been the dark-thirty hours of the day. Which I can manage while still on maternity leave – for a few more weeks. I wonder, though, what I’ll be able to manage when I go back to work.
I target a minimum of 1200 words per day and six days a week. Most days, that’s been do-able. Sometimes, I well surpass that. Others, I may be rounding up a bit. I’m trying to balance working on something new with editing something written that I’m actively posting. It’s interesting… Some days, I don’t want to leave my ‘new’ story to edit. Others, I don’t want to leave my being-posted story once I’m in editing mode.
I’ve also become very involved in text-to-speech listening to a chapter. How it flows. How it sounds. The differences between how it sounds in my head versus how it sounds when the recorded voice reads it. In the last mile of editing, I listen to it, adjust, listen again. Adjust some more. I think it’s really made a difference in the polish of something I’m sharing online. But, I won’t lie, it does make editing a longer process.
And you may have guessed that I’m here because I’m not-entirely-stuck-per-se-but-definitely-procrastinating on my “new” fic. I wrote it in August(ish) after being inspired by a song. The story just hit me and whooshed out over a couple of weeks. It was before baby, because I could sit down with my laptop (hah! Those were the days! I have to do everything I can on my phone right now, GAH!) and listen to the song over and over and just write. And I was pretty pleased with the first draft version of the story. I’d enjoyed re-reading it. I had a title I wasn’t in love with but when I finally got the epilogue (rewrite) to work, it all kinda clicked together.
I was so excited about it I shared it with someone. Who liked it, but I guess thought that this was an almost final draft instead of a first draft. 130 comments later… I mean, some good things to think about. But, when this person got to the epilogue, it was: You should make more of this. You should explore these themes. You’re shortcutting the story. And the characters. And their development.
Me: Uh. I mean. Sure, that was the ‘meat’ of the story, in terms of making the whole thing meaningful and not just some fluff + a sex scene. But… I mean. I wasn’t planning on a full meal, here. Just some appetizers and dessert? 8000 words and I could have used it as a nicely done entry to the Church of Lemons in Feb and gone on with my life. Pleased with my little story, and always wondering (because I was wondering) if it should have been more. Quite frankly, this appeared as me wondering how many other people would kinda mimic a version of the scenario and then build off it in their own way(s).
I don’t mean this to sound arrogant; it was just a different ‘take’ on their relationship. And we are nothing if not fanfiction writers. So, nothing is ever COMPLETE. And we all do it – catch something in someone else’s story that just hits us in a “what if” sort of way, and off we go…
So, being-posted fic is told in a very linear fashion. Which is not usual for me. I usually insert flashbacks as a way of keeping drama high without skimping on showing vs telling. Like New story – it starts off as if it’s Today, and MC1 flashes back as she’s waiting for MC2 to meet her someplace. She’s remembering key moments in her relationship with MC2. And then ch 2 is MC2 en route to meet MC1; he is having his own flashbacks on their relationship. Some different angles and perspectives due to the POV. Third chapter is Today after they meet, and where they go from Today. Lots of flashbacks. Very compact story for one that spans 6 years.
People have been reacting (for the most part) so positively to being-posted fic, that I started to wonder – between the contrasted, linear style and the unexplored themes + development…. If there wasn’t more to tell in New Story. So I tried rewriting it in chronological order. Now, it’s become a novella and is encroaching on novel territory. I…I’m not really sure what to do or say about that? Except it’d just been pouring out day in and day out. And then it decided it needed to go do something action-y (it was a fluffy, somewhat comedic romance with a sex scene!); and so it started down that path – which makes sense in some ways and the door was flipping there all along in the short version – it’s making the story harder to write. Things are eeking out as opposed to flowing. *sigh*
I prefer writing action-y things overall. I find myself to be a pretty poor romance writer. And I’m pretty picky about the romance novels I bother to read. Whereas a good mystery or action-adventure is easier for me to be willing to try / experiment with. However, they’re flipping difficult! And I’m pretty sure it’s that difficulty that has been making me work on anything but my love of my life novel: The Fourth Dimension.
Honestly, I don’t know when it all changed. It used to be easier for me to write action scenes than romance scenes. And as much as I still think my efforts at “Romantica” leave much to be desired, I am apparently more willing to write that these days than action / fight scenes. I’m not sure why, but it is irritating me…
All of that said. I need to get a few hours of sleep so maybe I can get more than a couple of hundred words done – like yesterday.