March 3, 2010

Newborn Stage and finding the real story...

I'm in the newborn stage of my novel. Birthing is over- I have my characters and part of the plot - I'll learn as I go - about the characters, their motives, and their story. Right now it feels good, like holding a newborn with all the expectations of what he or she will be someday.

Today I wrote a new scene and am feeling good about my work. This isn't always so. I'm a huge critic and a ruthless editor. That's why I've done well with short pieces. I love cutting and surgically removing all the excess fat. Sometimes I have little left.

But my "baby novel" is so soft and sweet and lovable right now. I want this feeling to last forever. And it will, until tomorrow when I'll allow myself to read what I've written. Then the disappointment will set in. How could I have been so fooled by my own words. How could something be so perfect one day and so misbehave the next.

It's all in the writing - finding the real story that's hiding among the many useless words.

Off here to print the pages I've written today. Keep writing. And, blessings!

4 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for stopping by my blog today! Sounds like you have a ruthless internal editor! It might be worth it to try to keep that editor locked up for a while and let the story flow! I have a pretty strict internal editor too, and I have to work hard to keep it from interfering with the creative aspect of just writing! Blessings!

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  2. Wow - you hit it on the head. I'm in a constant tug of war between the editor and the writer sides. Today - I just wrote and somehow the editor stayed at bay. IF only I had a cage to lock the "editor" in. Thanks for the encouragement. Barb

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  3. Every November, I teach NaNoWriMo in my classroom. This is a project where you write a novel in a month -- the standard goal is 50,000 words, but kids can set their own goals (or let their teacher help them choose a good one).

    On October 31, we draw our "Inner Editor Monsters" -- we make them good, too. Fangs, claws, red eyes, great hairy beasts that the kids LOVE drawing on that particular day of the year anyway. And we lock them in a "cage" made out of construction paper, not to be freed until December 1.

    I do not allow them to read what they have written, except for a sentence or two to get their bearings.

    You know, the rest of the year, I tear my own work apart. I read it half a dozen times before I start writing for the day -- IF I start writing for the day. But when I do NaNoWriMo alongside the kids, I somehow seem to lock up my own editor. I remind myself that the voice that's saying, "This is no good -- start over" is supposed to be locked up in a cage at the writing center. So I ignore that voice and keep going.

    Must be why I wrote LIVVIE OWEN LIVED HERE as a NaNoWriMo novel. Also TEN THINGS THAT WON'T BURN. My two best, most complete novels, one of them on the path to publication -- written when I played a fun game alongside the kids and locked my inner editor up for a month.

    Not saying you have to draw the picture. Just that there's something to be said for telling that little nagging inner voice to go AWAY for a while!

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  4. Sarah,
    You described exactly the monster editor that lives inside me.
    Fangs, claws, red eyes, great hairy beasts - I honestly feel like it's alive and keeping me from "finishing" my novels. I have only one complete, and several unfinished. I'm determined to finish the project I'm writing now. Your advice helps. I have to visualize the editor as the enemy and not the friend when I start wanting to pull my novel apart before it's even built. thank you thank you thank you...

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