Taking a Break from My Book, The King’s Son

A few weeks ago, I stopped working on The King’s Son. I had been rewriting the third draft for close to a year and had hoped to get it done in the next couple of months, but the words became too difficult to get out. Sometimes I would sit for five hours and produce nothing more than a page or two – a few times only a paragraph or two. It was painful and unenjoyable, and I couldn’t do it anymore. Continue reading

What’s in a Name?

 

Last night I was speaking to a friend of mine about how I choose the names my characters. She, too, is a writer and is having some difficulty with what to call the protagonist in one of her stories. She thought she had picked a name she liked, but later realized that she was wrong. She even went so far as to say the name annoys her. And she wanted to know what she could do about it.

I told her my process. It’s actually pretty simple one, I think. Though it does involve a little trial and error.

I write until I come upon the name that feels right.
Continue reading

Nanowrimo Wins by K.O.

It’s official: Nanowrimo has beaten me.

I was doing pretty well with it for a while. I was behind my word quota, but not by much. I easily could have caught up before the deadline.

But there were a few things going against me and they eventually won out. Continue reading

Nanowrimo: Just Write and Have Fun

As Nanowrimo approaches, there is a lot of buzz going around. I’ve read blog posts on things you need to do to accomplish writing your 50,000 words. That has ranged in everything from where you write and what you eat to mapping out your plot and working on your character development. I’ve also read posts on how anxious people are about hitting that word-goal. It takes a lot of time and dedication to get it done and is most definitely daunting!

Personally, I’ve done Nanowrimo four times and was a winner three of them because I ditched one year’s project to work on something else. I’ve also done the Nanorwimo style of writing (50,000 words in one month) to write three other books (not in November).

This isn’t to brag. It’s simply to let you know that the Nanowrimo style of writing has worked for me.

And there’s really only two things I’ve followed each time: the first is to focus on the word count; the second is to have fun.

It seems simple enough. And I honestly believe that it is. Continue reading

Being Truthful to the Characters

I finally got through a major hurdle. I mean, I think it was a major hurdle. I had been working on the same chapter for three days. I couldn’t get it to sound exactly the way I wanted. I’m not actually sure that it is the way I wanted. But it was enough to feel comfortable sending it off to my friend to edit. Continue reading

My Characters Audition

It occurred to me today that with each rewrite I do, I’m making my characters audition for a role in my book.

For example, in one rewrite a character may be stubborn, but in another a little less so. He/She may be inquisitive and confident, then more of a weak follower.

It isn’t that their characters completely change. But there are some differences that come out each time that I write about them.

And when I begin my final rewrite (the one before I move on to pacing and grammar), I settle upon the character I feel best fits the part and write them that way. Continue reading

On Not Quitting

I came across this quote yesterday by Richard Bach: A professional author is an amateur author who didn’t quit. I couldn’t have seen it at a better time.

Editing and rewriting my book has been hard. Even now, looking now at one of the pages of my manuscript, I see all of the notes on how I need to expand certain parts (I wrote a post about that) and cut others, how I have to get deeper into the characters’ thoughts and actions, how I must add a lot more description.

That I took those notes in red ink doesn’t help (as I had been warned). It looks angry. It looks aggressive. It looks like blood has been splattered across the page.

But let’s get back to the edit and rewrite. Continue reading