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Surviving the Writing Process: Shafter's Novel

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Sat Jan 13, 2007 11:48 pm
Shafter says...



I decided to write a novel when I was fourteen.

Three years later, I'm still plugging away at it.

I started all wrong, just pounding out a super-clichéd fantasy novel with a prophecy, tyrannical emperor, and The Chosen One. Subplots were scattered through it with no point to them, all the characters were pretty bland and the dialogue consisted of a lot of chit-chat talk.

UGH! :shock:

About a year ago, as I was trying to resurrect a story out of all of that, I wondered, "Why the heck didn't I READ about writing before I started trying to actually write?!!"

The truth is, if I'd known how hard it was to write a novel, I probably would've never started.

Thank God I was ignorant!

Well, Caste of the Spider is currently a whole novel. Under construction, but a whole novel nevertheless. Right now I'm in the process of reworking the ending, since my antagonist refuses to die (which is why I'm annoyed with him), generally making the story less clichéd, and cutting useless subplots. It's a slow process, sometimes painful, sometimes rewarding.

Fortunately for me, but perhaps unfortunate for my health, I've gotten to the point where not writing is a physically painful thing. I'm addicted beyond hope, and I'm afraid I will be a starving novelist for the rest of my life.

I'm ready for it! ;)


P.S. Those of you who wish to follow me in my journey can visit this topic again.
Those who don't can go and live happy, fulfilling, perfectly normal lives while I write myself to death in my basement. Have fun!
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Sun Jan 14, 2007 4:32 am
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HeadInTheClouds says...



Ignorance truly is bliss, eh? Yeah, if i'd know exactly how hard it was to write a series (not the best coice for someone who's never written a book before, but i'm now hopelessly devoted to writing it) I never would have started either. But i'm so glad I didn't know what the hell I was getting myself into, although it probably would have been better for my personal health if i'd just forgotten the whole thing, but it's far too late now. I'm hooked. Sometimes I can't even sleep at night, there are far too many ideas running wild insinde my head, begging to be writen. Ah, the not so glorious life of a young writer with no idea whatsoever what she is doing.
If I don't write to empty my mind, I go mad. ~Lord Byron

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Sun Jan 14, 2007 10:36 am
Swires says...



Sadly - Im one of the sad acts that researched and read every article I could get my hands on. The task was daunting.
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Tue Jan 16, 2007 10:40 am
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Myth says...



I was the same when I started my novel and a year later it is much better than what it was in the beginning.

You have a complete novel, post more of Caste as I'd like to read further into the tale. Plus I have a fascination for spiders.
.: ₪ :.

'...'




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Tue Jan 16, 2007 11:40 am
Esmé says...



quote:
About a year ago, as I was trying to resurrect a story out of all of that, I wondered, "Why the heck didn't I READ about writing before I started trying to actually write?!!"

The truth is, if I'd known how hard it was to write a novel, I probably would've never started.

Thank God I was ignorant!



I'm still ignorant, hehe. Never read any book on the actual writing, though I know I should... Uhm, I think I'm... just a bit scared of it....


Anyways, just wanted to say that I like what you're writing :) Probably nothing new, but I'll say it nevertheless.




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Tue Jan 16, 2007 4:17 pm
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Shafter says...



Myth: I plan to post more soon, but I'm still trying to repiece my second chapter together. Sage is helping me, but it's still a long process. I'm glad you like it, though! You make me happy. :blush:

Elein: Thanks for the compliment. :) You have to decide at what point you're willing to make the plunge and read a writing book. It can be incredibly helpful or just plain depressing! ;) Fortunately, for me it was the former.

P.S. I believe in faeries too! ;)
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Tue Jan 16, 2007 4:44 pm
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gyrfalcon says...



*pops in*
*hugs*
*pops out*
"In a sort of ghastly simplicity we remove the organ and demand the function...We laugh at honour and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful." ~C.S. Lewis




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Wed Jan 17, 2007 1:58 pm
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Esmé says...



quote:
I decided to write a novel when I was fourteen.
Three years later, I'm still plugging away at it.

Uhm, my version:

I decided to write a novel when I was eleven.
Two years later, I'm still plugging away at it.

LOL. No, this is not funny. This is sad. =)

Hey, my first ( longer than ten pages) story was about some slave girl. Ended it at the twentieth. Second was about a girl who would be queen of something (fifty pages). Ah, I know. A bit... cliche, yes.


Anyways, congrats that you actually finished the story... I somehow can never manage that...

-elein




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Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:33 pm
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Shafter says...



Don't give up, Elein! You have to write a lot of clunkers before you can write something good. Seriously. I have a story I started when I was ten and told to my sister in chapters every night. Stupid? Yes. But I was able to salvage the characters I created and some of the world, and now that story is on my waiting list of stuff to write next.

You'll finish a story someday. You're young-- you have plenty of time. Don't give up! :D
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Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:36 pm
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Esmé says...



Tuh, the 'you have plenty of time' is giving me the creeps... How many people have told me that? Shafter, start a second novel and we'll see... LOL You have a lot of time, too, you know?

How do you put up with the editing? I mean, a) write the book b) edit it. edit the whole, whole, whole thing, Eh, not for my nerves...

-elein




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Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:41 pm
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Shafter says...



Okay, uhm... you have NO TIME AT ALL!!! :lol: Seriously. You're in the same place a lot of people are when they graduate high school. Or college. Sure, you're always going to feel a time crunch, but you have to remind yourself that most writers start their careers much later. You're getting a head start!

Believe it or not, I love editing. L-o-v-e it!! Especially when I'm editing myself. I'm rather merciless, tearing out whole subplots if I don't like them or killing characters I don't need. I love it, love it love it love it...

*Suddenly looks embarrassed* Oh, excuse me. I'm just a little obsessed with editing. ;)
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Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:44 pm
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Esmé says...



0_o Wow. Uhm, well, editing? Yelps and hides in shadowy corner*

Aaaaaah!

You WILL be posting more of the book, right?

-elein




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Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:46 pm
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Shafter says...



*Covers ears* Yes, yes, yes! I will be posting more! :lol: I feel happy that people are bugging me about it. In fact, I have to sign off now and go work on my second chapter-- I'm editing it right now and I hope to post it very soon!

Nice chatting with you.

Cheers! ~Shafter
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Sat Jan 27, 2007 12:06 am
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Shafter says...



Announcement! Announcement!

I've finally gotten the courage to post chapter two of my novel! Anyone who critiques will recieve a steaming hot batch of chocolate chip cookies. :D

Here's the link:
viewtopic.php?t=10910
Chapter Two's on the bottom of page two.
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