Beginnings

13 01 2012

I just wrote the first line of my novel. And now I’m back to procrastinating as I write this blog about it. Go writer!

Well, already I’m feeling the inner editor rearing its ugly head, telling me that there’s no way you’ll keep that first line and maybe it’s right. But at least I’ve begun now. The document has been created and I wrote the first line. Two, actually. A total of forty words. In those forty words, I think I’ve already established that this world is not entirely normal, that it’s certainly not set in the present and I’ve introduced the main character by name and gender. Not too bad, I think.

Now, I’ve said earlier that I was going to rewrite the novel I did for NaNoWriMo back in 2010 and perhaps I am. Time will tell. What I am doing is using one of the characters from that novel and telling his story first. It’s what I’m feeling inspired to do right now, partly because he’s an interesting character and partly because it’s a story that has been in my head for a very long time, one that I started as a short story over a decade ago and never really expanded on. Time to write that story now.

I’m not much of a planner. I don’t outline my stories. I don’t know how they will end when I begin writing them. Perhaps that’s why I’ve never really been able to actually finish anything. I like to think that the reason I haven’t finished anything yet is because I haven’t had the will for it before. I found that will last year. I finished NaNoWriMo. Didn’t just reach 50 thousand words and then stopped. No, I wrapped up the story (perhaps a little fast, granted) and put ‘The End’ on it. And it felt fantastic!

And so, while beginnings are easy (I have dozens of beginnings in notebooks and stored on my computer), this time around I feel confident that I will at least get a first draft of this story done in 2012.

Now, back to writing on my novel instead of procrastinating with writing about writing!

 

[Edit] And then, just as I returned to the document and wrote another one hundred words or so, the muse decided that the story needs to start a little more… Um… Violently. Fun times!

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One response

13 01 2012
Heidi Ellis

I hear you on this. It took me almost 30 years to properly end a story. I just kept hitting a wall and starting something else that had been whispering in my ear.
The only thing I can tell you to circumnavigate this is look at your characters, and the direction they’re heading in. ASk yourself, where do I want these characters to end up. Happy? Dead? Limping, but breathing? Together? Separate? And write down the most satisfying conclusion. It doesn’t have to make sense now. Keep it in your back pocket. At least you have a tentative ending. I tend to work piecemeal, bits in the middle then the end then go back and add more to the front. Doesn’t work real well, but that’s how my brain works. It’s also why I’m on my gazillionth rewrite. BUT! I have an ending. And the sequel is already started. Writing is kinda nebulous. Things will change, and if you just accept this up front, and of course, the idea that first drafts will always suck, you can put your inner editor on hold till later. 🙂

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