Day 65

Spoiler Alert! May contain planning-stage plot/character details or other spoilers!

09 Feb 2016

Contains affiliate links. Been thinking about doing the James Patterson writing masterclass. It’s funny; I launched this project thinking I wanted to write the next YA bestseller, set a new record for first novel sold, that kind of thing, but the more I get into it, the more I’m realizing I have to do things in a way that works for who I am, whether it’s writing schedule, content, pacing, characterization, etc.

So on the one hand, I’m afraid to start looking at what others recommend (James Patterson and Stephen King being the two sources I’m primarily looking at), for fear of their ideas influencing my direction in a way that degrades the uniqueness, because let’s face it, I’m never going to pace a thriller to compete with either of those publishing masters. That said, I would really like to know how they approach various things, and it makes sense to take advantage of ‘lessons learned’.

So, don’t hold me to this, but I think the right thing to do is to finish the first draft without outside input, and finish a whole first round of edits/rewrites, before looking at what outside advice I can bring in.

I may be overestimating my preciousness, like so many of my generation are accused of doing…

yeah, probably.

Apologies to all of you in advance who have invested in learning your craft; I’m just going to keep winging it for now. Although I have career experience in marketing, communications and strategy, I’m going to try instinct and artistic freedom instead, foolishly.

But in an industry where doing everything right is no guarantee of success, why not try doing everything wrong? How much worse could the odds get?

Meanwhile in the real world, my parents just floated the idea of going into creative arts direction/worship leading as a career and it blew my mind.

What a stupid idea.

What a compelling idea.

I wanted to be a pro musician or at least a music teacher in high school, and it was always at war with my desire to write and my need to have a stable career. But to be paid to help churches connect with people in a meaningful way, to make music and work with musicians and bands, to coordinate creative arts and marketing in the service of something meaningful… it’s horribly, terrifyingly compelling.

Also, quite impossible feeling. I’d need years of guitar and probably piano and theory lessons still. I’d have to overcome objections to women in leadership. I’d have to build and work with teams, engaging in difficult conversations (going to an office…), deal with the burden of having my lifestyle scrutinized for sin and spiritual discipline.

Not to mention, being judged for the way I look, and then being out of a career in a decade, when I age out of it…

Hmm… Of course, then I’d be free to write another book…

I’m sure I’m not talented enough, skilled enough, social enough, attractive enough, holy enough or strong enough to do the job. But oh, do I want to!

So, maybe, maybe I’ll find some time this week to keep practicing those guitar exercises, to drag my brother’s keyboard out from under the bed. Certainly, I could use a professional excuse to have all these instruments lying around!

And back to the writing world, I’m still concerned about Cole’s characterization/introduction. Is she compelling as a person? Is she interesting? Do you want to know more about her?

Oh! Another encouragement, too. I had very nearly decided to switch the storytelling mode to third person, when I started reading Helen Dunmore’s latest Ingo book(Tide Knot ). Written beautifully in first person present!

She’s a fantastic writer. One concern is that the whole book (so far) has been very nice and linear, single perspective, which is, of course, what you are supposed to do with that type of storytelling. I’ll deal with that problem later… (ugh!)


Start time: 10:00 am

Location: couch/living room

Drinking: G&T

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