(#0051)

It’s been four months since I was on wordpress, since I decided to leave this blog and never return!

…Well, it definitely felt longer than four months.

I’m not exactly sure why I’ve returned. Part of me was plenty happy to keep the blog private – hidden – and not think of logging in or bothering with that little extra task of maintaining what I was trying to do.

And I say trying, because it isn’t what I intend to do any longer.

Things change. Though I’ve struggled with figuring out how to apply this change to my blog, without changing the pen-name it’s under and without moving the site’s url elsewhere, but still make it clear that I’m no longer resonant with the past posts I’ve written. Sure, everything I’ve spoken about has synthesized into forward-geared thoughts… but for me, it feels different. I feel different.

At the time of June, I was in a busy state of mind. I felt a great deal of pressure from social media, not just wordpress, but from all outlets. The constant nagging subconscious reminder of easy rejection, as well as casual acceptance, both of which (for me) tend to create a hypercritical awareness of myself and how I spend my time and what I spend that time on… I tend to overthink things plenty on my own, such that the likes of FB, Twitter, etc. did not serve me and in consequence, did not serve my writing.

So, I’ve gone off social media more or less. *Small moment of mourning for the loss of a potential author platform~ I wouldn’t count wordpress at the moment, it’s very different from what FB is and what Twitter is and even what Goodreads is. At the time though, it got lumped in with the rest, thrown out with the bathwater – so to speak.

Well, there could still be some practical use to keeping this blog running and active. As always, it’s been a blog for myself, to help me get my head on straight and to use as an outlet for contemplation and experimentation.

There are a couple months left, but this year has been a whirlwind in its own special way. I’ve gone through the process of both publishing a novel and abandoning the pen-name I wrote it with. It was a tricky thing to backtrack and remove what groundwork I had set down, but I wanted to do it because I wanted to free myself to play more with stand-alone publications, not cement myself into a series commitment.

I’ve mentioned a few times in the past on other entries that I am a very mutable person. Still, there are plenty of times I struggle to accept and incorporate this, especially alongside a raging perfectionism that tends to hold me back in a very inexcusable manner. Despite this, I believe there might be merit to figuring out how to process manuscripts and writing in a way that understands this non-fixed approach. I’m currently stuck on how to juggle new & old story ideas and in the midst of that juggling, how to finish a project to my liking.

Maybe none of the projects I’ve been working on in the past couple of years should be finished… But I’ve spent so much time, so many words, so much printed paper on them! 268 pages of a fantasy that’s only half-done and an absolute mess when put to my ridiculing standards of glorious writing, though not so bad when compared to… erm… some other things… like my prior novels.

If it’s about passion, belief in the story, well… that’s a trick for me too because I can easily feel passion for a new story and it wanes the longer I’m aware of the story. I can believe in a story separate from this passion and I’m still sorting through what this means to me and how I can use it to guide my writing journey on a more clear-cut path instead of chopping through thick jungle vines.

For instance, I believe in my fantasy novel that I’ve mentioned numerous times on this blog. I believe in the story, I believe in the presentation – but I do not believe in the narration. I believe only in some of the characters, not all of them. There are parts which are good, there are parts which are meaningful, and there are parts which seem so… off that I just don’t know what to do with them anymore – or perhaps it is that one section I can’t seem to bring myself to write, no matter what prepwork I do.

It’s the same for my speculative fantasy, I believe in the story – do I ever believe in it! – but I don’t believe in my presentation, I don’t believe in my ability to accurately reveal it or manage to grab and pull out the reaction I intend a reader to have…

…And really, it’s a problem when I can’t figure that out. Least, I think so. I’d like to figure it out on my own though because it seems, most of all, an internal issue of a kind.

How about my short story? Y’know, the one I was going to publish a couple months back, but instead disappeared off the face of the earth? Yeah, that one.

Well, it’s sitting right next to me on my bookshelf – edited, and waiting to be polished to a neat formatted sheen by me. I deleted my Smashwords account during the social media purge, however. Which is fine… because if I do publish it – I’m changing the title and cover completely, as well as the pen-name. I’d like to choose a pen-name that is incredibly boring and innocuous and not all that invasive onto the work itself. Though I’ll get to that when it’s actually ready and time to do that.

There’s some decisions left to make in my mind – mostly, whether I weave back in the sexual content of the original story or if I leave the censorship that I edited to cater to a wider audience… it’s a tough decision for me because the sexual content plays a role and I’m rather proud of that scene, I feel it accomplished exactly what I was going for, but I do like a challenge also and I feel that I also executed the censorship well enough too. So, both are equally good when it comes to logistics – which leaves the matter to… heart? mind? my soul? …I don’t know.

Anyways, this post is getting lengthy even though there’s more I could continue on with.

4 months, but it felt like 4 years.

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And: Yes, I know NaNo is coming up. No, I haven’t decided if I’m participating yet. I’m waiting for that midnight deadline to decide, of course~

Also, Happy Autumn!

4 thoughts on “(#0051)

  1. Waiting till midnight, October 31, to come to decision on nano? You and me both!

    There is so much I can address here — but let me just leave it at this: you’re a writer. And you will figure this out. We all approach writing differently, which is why there’s no end-all beat-all advice out there, but I believe that writers, while they may falter, they never give up. So I know you will be okay in the long run. I’ve had to change a particular story’s MC multiple times, and I’m still not 100% pleased with who he is right now. I let him simmer in the back of my mind because I think (know) that I’m still wearing rose-colored glasses when I look at the story.

    And I’ve also been frustrated by the fact that many of my stories don’t come to completion. So recently, I’ve tried a new approach: think of my story as a tv show. 1 season = 1 novella. A 30-45k word count isn’t as intimidating as the 80k word count. I’m forcing myself to get to that conclusion under 40k words. And for the first book, it’s worked. My inner monologue keeps reminding me that the story isn’t done, a novella doesn’t equal a novel, but regardless, I did write something from the beginning to the end. And small accomplishments like that are good for the soul.

    It’s nice to see you back. And sit on your short story. Keep writing. The answers will come to you when they are ready. And congratulations on publishing!!

    1. Thank you for your supportive words and sharing that approach! It’s a clever way of approaching it because if you do write seasons/novellas, then by the third or fourth one in the same world, it can be combined to be a very thorough novel of four parts. Also, interesting to compare it to a tv show season – do you look at chapters as episodes?

      80+k word counts can be very intimidating when still figuring out who a writer is as an author. I get lost a lot in my 100k manuscript when I’m trying to do simple edits and writing scenes in, which requires me to move things around or spend a fair amount of time checking the context of a scene or chapter. This checking takes up a lot of time compared to my smaller manuscripts. It’s all process, eh?

      Again, thanks for the welcome back. Glad to see you’re also about too ^_^ I’m hoping to try some new type of posts here and there when I feel like it. I’ve been thinking a lot about trying to make this blog more inspiring as a whole – not just for myself anymore, but for others too. Right now, it seems like finding ways to inspire others might be a worthwhile adventure while on this point of my journey as a writer. I’ve spent a lot of time during the past three blog-years on technical aspects and personal development, so to spend some time in the coming years on encouragement and inspiration specifically for others seems like an engaging exploration of intention and thought. But we’ll see!

      What sort of things do you find most inspiring, encouraging, and/or engaging?

      1. I’m here as often as I can be! Which, since the eve of November, has been egregiously sporadic — at least this month I can blame it on nanowrimo.

        I absolutely love long manuscripts, but it can get frustrating. One of the first things I do after finishing a story is the chapter-by-chapter rundown where I make a big set of crib notes and markers on foreshadowing, clues, etc. But even then, I miss a lot and have to go digging -.- Editing… it’s a love-hate relationship.

        The novella chapters aren’t necessarily episodic (but definitely an option!). I make the chapters very short and are mostly single scenes. My latest novella is 38 chapters! By writing shorter chapters, it feels less demanding and the pace stays consistent. If I can’t end the scene with a cliffhanger, then the chapter isn’t yet complete.

        Honestly, when it comes to blog posts, I find myself more engaged with personal posts — posts that have to do about the writer’s life, internal struggles/demons, and personal how-to’s about tackling these problems. I like posts that are down to earth and speak in plain English, cussing and all. As far as inspiration and encouragement goes, reading about success stories and small (or large!) personal victories does it for me. Even a short post about how the cheesecake finally didn’t crater across the middle is encouraging — and I want to know how that was done!

        1. Thanks for sharing! Yeah, I get lost in the sauce – so to speak – when it comes to longer manuscripts, but I’m gradually getting a handle on how long or short I might want things to be and the reasons why behind varying lengths. I used to have a bit of a grudge against short chapters because they always made my longer chapters feel especially long, but I’ve started to get over that because a chapter is as long as it needs to be (or as short as it needs to be). I have such a habit to make the first chapters be much longer than the last few chapters and am currently trying to figure out whether I want to keep to that pacing or make it more varied – but in the end, it’ll depend on the individual manuscript itself.

          And thanks for sharing what engages you, that is very interesting to me, but I get it also. It’s one of the reasons I enjoy reading Chuck Wendig’s blog so much – so much cussing! Lol, I mean… he talks so plainly about writing! Again, thanks for taking the time to share, hope NaNo is treating you well so far. :3

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