No one, in person or online, has asked about the progress of my writing in a long time, probably because I made a few public threats and mentioned that conversations were starting to go like this every time I run into some people I know:
It’s funny, I never realized how a question as simple as, “How many pages do you have?” could make me want to roundhouse kick someone across the face.
But anyway, since I haven’t updated you on this area of my life in some time, I thought I should let you know the thoughts that are going through my head.
- The book that I quit my job to write is not the one I’m currently working on. It hasn’t been for a while. The story just seemed to stop for me. I am not done with it, but I think it’s resting for a while.
- I went back to that time travel fantasy piece that has been brewing in my head for 5 years. Have you ever written about time travel? I know some people throw fantasy in this pile of “make up whatever you want and write it down” (I used to), but me-oh-my, is it ever more work than that! First, because the sort of time travel I am dealing with in my novel is not anything I have ever dealt with before, nor have I seen it executed in this manner, I feel like I’m walking across a frozen pond. Without giving too much away, the manner in which the people in my novel travel through time is unconventional (yes, this sounds weird) and I’m actually having to think this through and plot it out very carefully.
- My protagonist was a [middle-aged] (actual age removed so it doesn’t bring up too many questions 😉 ) man (still is?), but I think my point-of-view may be shifting — to that of his 15-year-old daughter. I did not see this coming, but it makes a lot of sense. Deciding who this is marketed to is a big part of choosing the direction the story will take, and I feel like there may be more universal appeal if it’s from the POV of a teenage girl than from an older man. (Maybe I’ll include both?) That, and because it was her voice and her story that was continuing to fight its way out. When I was plotting out the backstory, I kept coming back to her and what she would be experiencing and how that was most likely the more interesting story.
- I am toying with the idea of turning a person who is very good into someone very bad toward the end of the first novel…or somewhere in the middle of the second. Yes, I have this plotted out into a trilogy. But I keep coming back to how I felt [SPOILER ALERT if you haven’t read ALL of The Hunger Games] with all the things that happened to Peeta. I was very conflicted while reading that and I know how difficult and dangerous it is to take a character who is mostly good and do something very harsh to them. It can be hard to maintain your readers’ trust.
That’s where I’m at right now. I am still really interested in writing a verse novel, and though I know I’ll return to the one I was working on before, part of me wonders if this piece can go that way or if it would be better served with a more traditional style.
Have you ever completely shifted the point-of-view in something that you’re writing? How did it pan out for you?
P.S., Someone please send a white board, Sheldon Cooper, and some serious caffeine so we can figure out this time travel thing.