Monday, January 23, 2012

Project #2?

"Writing a blog should be easy! You're going to be writing novels for a living, right? A few paragraphs a day shouldn't be too hard." Haha! I really had to laugh. This isn't something someone told me. It's what I told somebody else after they quit writing on their own blog. Oh boy. Was I wrong or what? Being consistent is hard! Very hard… I am happy to report, though, that I've been able to keep up with my resolution, writing at least one sentence a day. Turns out, once you get once sentence down, it's easier to write a little more. And then a little more. Pretty soon, you've got the story stuck in your head all day and hey! You just thought of a new idea! Writing is a really good feeling, and writing well is even better!

I've added a project. I know, I know, I said one at a time. -hides behind a rock- Okay, let me explain!!! So, here's how it happened. My writer friend, the one I told you about last time? Let's call her…Becca (since I don't want to go promoting her over my own writing! ;P Haha. Just kidding. Sorry Becks!) So Becca and I started a book back when I was in high school. It was just after we'd met. She and I decided to write a book together with another armature author we'll call Katie (for the sake of protecting the innocent). So Becca and Katie and I started writing this story together. It was fun. We each wrote sections of about three or more paragraphs at a time, writing as our own characters but keeping the whole thing in a third person omniscient tense. It was really cool. Back then I knew virtually nothing about professional writing. All I knew was that I loved it, and I was eager to write something opposite someone who knew a little more about what they were doing. As we grew, the story grew and our writing styles grew. Becca taught me so much and I'm forever grateful! But about a year after the three of us had started the book, things turned sour. Katie went to college, and her enthusiasm for writing all but died. She swore up and down she still loved to write. Every time we talked to her she'd promise over and over that her piece was in the works, but then it'd be months before we ever heard from her again. Becca and I were devastated, worried that the book would completely fall apart. Without Katie to write in her parts of the book we'd never finish! For almost an entire year the book was put on hold. Becca and I would talk about the characters, exchange thoughts on ideas, and even write out dialogue for future pieces of the book. All of this we did to pass the time between Katie's updates. We even created, started, and were in the middle of two sequels! It was getting ridiculous and too much to bare. We didn't work on the book for so long, even I started to forget about it...

In an effort to revitalize my own inspiration for this original co-written story, I went back to page one and started reading. What I read shocked me. Of course, I expected the writing to be lacking. I'd always expected to go back and reedit everything. After all, back then I hadn't known anything about anything. The precious little more I know now is a HUGE improvement on the horrific writing I used to think passed for "good" four years ago. What I didn't expect to see was how, frankly, terrible Katie's writing actually was. Now, the writing itself was...alright. It's not one of my favorite styles, but as far as grammar and sentence structure and flow and all of that good stuff goes it was okay. But Oh my word! You would not believe how awful some of it was. Her male characters were mushy and overly sensitive and quite frankly acted a lot like girls. Her leading ladies were weepy and helpless and absolutely annoying. Her dialogue was ridiculous and her character interactions were unrealistic in some of the most unbelievable ways! She actually had written an entire scene where two guys sat over cocktails and shared their feelings!!! And these were two macho guys. An army soldier and a retired football payer. Not exactly the touchy feely cocktail type. It was sad. I literally felt like crying.

I found out, in about August of 2010 that Becca had been experiencing the same thing. She'd had a problem with Katie's writing for a while and had hinted at things here and there but had never come right out and said anything. I took the initiative and said it. It was bad. We talked things over for several months. Between ourselves and with Katie. By the end of October we told her the relationship was over. We couldn't write the story anymore with how poorly and rarely she was writing her pieces. After that mess was done and over with, we started clean up on the story, but there was so much to do, and with how busy our lives became the project went on hold yet again. Becca and I were working on other projects both separately and together, on top of our own lives at school and home and work. We had no time for the original story and all the renovating it needed. That brings us to about now. Last week, Becca and I were talking. I asked her, if she could change one major thing about that original story, what would it be? "The entire beginning" is the shortened version of the very long list she gave me. I agreed, of course. Katie's parts were impossible to keep in the book if we ever wanted it to do a good job and be proud of the story. Plus with her no longer a part of it, keeping her parts wouldn't be fair to her. So over the weekend we gathered up all the old stuff and pitched it. Back to square one!! We rewrote character profiles, reinvented characters that had been spoiled by Katie's lack of writing skill, and restarted the story itself! It's a big project, but a good one. It gives me a warm, happy feeling inside to know that we can go back and reinvent and re-enjoy the story that brought us together as friends. And even more than that, we've given ourselves a chance to take the story and really write it well. Hopefully, well enough to make some money! Yay!!! But most importantly, we can make it something to be proud of.

So all of that has been going on between Thursday and now. Just today we started writing the new beginning and so far it's going great! We've called it "Who Likes Who" as a working title. We'll see about actually naming it when the time comes to send it off to publishers. I expect to keep you updated on that as well as Conflict, which has been going slowly. But Surely. Definitely moving on that one, so that's exciting.

So many great things going on, it's hard not to put them all in one post! But I've got to save something to write about tomorrow, right? Haha.

So Until Then! -waves- Bye Bye!

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