Tag Archives: theme development

Books about Books!

21 May

After last weeks freak-out in relation to my first draft MS, I decided to re-look at my approach to getting my first novel completed. After I ran out of the room I was writing in and burst into tears, I spent the next 24 hours so stressed out, it brought me back to my ‘previous life’ when I worked in the corporate world (don’t mention the war). I realized I wasn’t excited about my writing anymore, I was stressed about it. This is where I stopped.

On Wednesday, I sat in the back garden with a big glass of my favorite St. Emillion red wine, and thought long and hard. I felt completely lost and over-whelmed at the task ahead. How on earth was I going to review 96K words I ‘heart-and-brain dumped’ onto my laptop over 3 months of solid writing?

Despite my best efforts along the way to visually map out structure & plot and carefully consider the fine art of story-telling, what I have at the moment is a very raw output of a story that has gone around in my head for as far back as 18 years ago.

But really – what do I know about structure and plot? It’s funny, when I originally thought about how I was going to tell the story, I envisaged a complicated structure of two parallel stories (past & present) of the same person that intertwined at significant moments to explain the protagonist’s character motives & reasonings . It was the way I saw the story most effectively played out. Three weeks into writing, I abandoned the idea as I was simply unable to work on the structure and the writing down of the story at the same time. But maybe there was something in that?

The MS is so far away from where I want it to be – so far away from where I know I can get it, in time.

So I have removed the stress, clawed back my passion for the story and marched myself to the bookstore where I picked up some books on novel-writing, story-telling, theme development, structure and plot. And you know, even just a few days into reading the first book I bought, I am not as lost as I thought I was. I should trust my instincts more, as both my heart and writing are guiding me in the right story direction for my novel.

Perhaps taking some time out to read about ‘how best to write’ is exactly what I needed to reset and support the balance — and so I will keeping reading for now!


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