One of the things I used to get all the time when I spoke about my first draft fetish was “I would love to write a novel. I have this idea…”
That’s great. I mean that’s really great. An idea is the starting point for a novel. Without an idea, you’re screwed. You gotta have something (I have nothing…) Before you can even begin to think about writing a novel.
A few weeks ago, I gave the first 2K OF SOMETHING I had been rehashing for months to Maddy to read, not thinking it was at its peak and still with no idea about how the story is going to progress (the first draft was extremely rough and ready). Maddy came back saying that she loved the scene and it totally captured the emotion for that particular event. I must admit that I was surprised. I had all but given up on that book, especially as it continued to haunt me for months until I realised it’s just unfathomable and finally let it rest.
Then, after deciding that I wasn’t going to do nanowrimo this month, I have read a lot and followed that up with adding a small chunk of words to the fantasy thing I started a year ago. I read it through first and realised that there are bits in there that must have been written by my “genius mind”, that moment you’re in the zone and its not forced any more and everything just flows, because some of it… Some of it sounds like it’s been written by someone proper. Some of it doesn’t feel or read like the kind of thing an amateur would write using snatched time while feeding a small child, or while in bed sick, or when on holiday from work. Some of it reads like the work of a person who does this all the time and properly which is a complete confidence boost. Of course, there is an awful lot of cruft between the good bits. Waffle and badly worded sentences, OMG the typos and continuity errors and the like, but the overall effect is that it’s not terrible. It’s not this huge scary monster I thought it was and that led me back to thinking that perhaps I should finish this first part and have done with it. There probably another 20k in there because, you know, dragons. So I should get and written them, be with them, destroy the universe I created and suck it up.
Then on to book 2, perhaps?