Thursday, July 21, 2011

keeping the story alive

I don't know how many times I've said this but I've rewritten (completely) my current WIP (#dawnWIP) several times in the past few years. And by several times, I can name at least 15 attempts. I have the drafts to prove it.

I can't say for sure why it failed so many times but I can tell you all the things I did.

First, I wrote the damn thing. The first time I made things up, tied them together, and finished it with a cliffhanger into the next chapter of the series (it wasn't meant for a series when I started it but it said so at the end. Damn endings.)

I was a newbie. It had to be my fifth full lenght story? So when I was done, didn't want to leave it, hated it when I read it, tossed it and started over. And over. And over. And over again.

It wasn't how I liked it so I took one idea, wrote the rest of the series and couldn't edit the first part of the story. So I did what anyone would do--or should do, really--go back to the original, sit my butt down, and write.

That's what I'm doing now but it's been two years so a lot of the original is hard to put in...enter the handy-dandy Director's Notebook writing edition!

That's right. I'm writing a diary to #dawnWIP on my first struggles, the original scenes that made me fall in love, where the characters came from, the original playlist, and the like.

I have to say  writing a Writer's Notebook was the best idea I ever had. When I put down the essence of the story, I can write #dawnWIP, read the notebook, and edit.

Hopefully, this version will make it to MS state.  And it will get there with the essence I've saved into the notebook.

My tips:
  1. Write as a companion. Director's Notebooks exist. Paw through one sometime.
  2. Let yourself wander in the explanations/inspirations/processes
  3. Speak all the truth
  4. Pretend you're rich-off-your-butt famous and let yourself talk to your fans. They want to know every detail about this story :)

Let me know what you guys think!