Wednesday, December 05, 2007


I did finish the JACK & JILL story last night, coming in at just over 70k. I'm not sure on the ending. It was a surprise to me. There was another ending I had envisioned, and which I might want to write after all when I do the editing. This ending is intriguing, but I'm not sure about it. Can't say more, unfortunately.

Now, I'll go back to JASPER and start on that tonight, to finish it. Before I dive back into the writing, I want to rethink the story in basic outline terms, just to make sure I feel solid about going into the second half of ACT II, which is always the most difficult part to write. I know I had intended JASPER to be one I write off-the-cuff, in order to reconnect with unfettered creativity, but to put it bluntly I've found I do have access to my creativity even when working from an outline, and I feel a lot better having a sense of what I'm doing. It saves a lot of time and produces better results. I'll do what I did recently with basic outlining of the JACK & JILL story -- I actually used my own walk-thru from the GAY MAN'S GUIDE TO WRITING FANTASY FICTION and wrote my notes in a simple text editor. A couple of hours to work through it, think it through again, edit, change, improve, was well worth the time. I'll also take time to reread, since it's been a few weeks now when I took off from JASPER to do JACK & JILL for Nano.

I hope to finish JASPER in about two weeks, three at the most, definitely within December. Then I'll edit both JASPER and JACK & JILL. I'll make complete copies available to Beta Readers once I have edited them, for feedback to use in final editing and polishing. The Beta Reader versions would be available in January, 2008, both as encrypted eBooks and on my new password-protected blog.

Oh, and it's December. That's okay. I'm on a roll. Ain't nuthin' stoppin' me now!




Wynn Bexton said...

I am working on a most interesting and intense scene in my novel right now. I did 10 pages of notes yesterday and today started to construct it. I already had a bit of it written from a long time ago (I tend to write spontaneous scenes as they come to me so I am putting the jig-saw puzzle pieces together now.) I find it quite exciting although it's a grim, brutal scene in which one of my favorite characters meets her fate. But it certainly has given me a big boost of incentive! Exciting stuff!

Adrian Swift said...

That's great, Wynn! I have never tried the "circular" approach, but I have envisioned stories that way, as "plug-in" scenes or sections. I can see where it could be helpful at times to write that way and assemble later.

I used to be such a linear thinker, but years ago I finally discovered that we are really circular thinkers who impose order on that circuitous "chaos" ... except it's not really chaos, as you are proving.

I love it when the "fun" scenes come up, which means engrossing, the kind that get our enthusiasm up to write them. Sounds like it's not going to be so much fun for your character, though.

I found a way to assuage my conscience when doling out "complications": from this point forward all my characters go to "Character Heaven" where all their sufferings are made up to them many times over.

It frees me from guilt, and has been approved by the Character Compensation Guild.

Best wishes for your writing!

dayya said...

That's great news, Adrian! Coffee cup salute to you, d:))

I always write "crazy quilt" style, but for the re-do of Swans I'm going for a thorough outline. I'm not a linear thinker--but if I don't get this book figured out somehow, I'm never going to get it written. d:)bra

Adrian Swift said...

Good luck to you, Debra, with your planning!

I think the 12-step outline in the Gay Man's Guide to Writing Fantasy Fiction is a great help. It helped me think my way through my otherwise unplanned stories.

As long as you know what's coming up, it's much easier to write toward it. The big pillars "make" the story in structural terms.

I don't feel I need a really, really detailed outline now like I used for my first novel. I think I can do pretty well just off the 12-step outline, a basic road map. It allows a lot of flexibility and also keeps me anchored in the main structural points.

If something changes, I can compare it to the rest of the outline and see how I need to tweak the rest of it. It's not too much information, but just enough.

Anyway, the key is not so much outlining as simply thinking. The outline helps us to think in an orderly manner. The Plot Standards Committee prefers that. ;-)

I think you'll fill in the plot holes and tie it all together this time in a way that is tight, focused, and really works.

Best wishes!

Gabriele C. said...

I've realised I work better when writing out of order, and my outline is mostly the historical facts. Rather un-German. :)

writerwoman said...

Congrats on finishing! You are a inspiration.

Happy Holidays.

Adrian Swift said...

Gabriele and Writerwoman,

Nice hearing from each of you! Thanks for stopping by.

It does feel good to complete a first draft, however one gets there.

Happy Holidays!