Waiting for "The Call"

“Honey, it’s always crap. Every book I write is crap. It’s my job to fix the crap afterwards,” according to Nora Roberts. Well, I've got it half right. Still working on the "fixing it" part. "Trust your characters to be complex enough and to have enough emotional baggage. Force them to make hard choices." Advice from Michelle Styles that might help!

Day One progress April 1, 2010

Filed under: Writing and Life — Autumn Macarthur @ 8:26 pm
Tags: , ,

Over 5,000 words! I’m not sure of the exact word count but I think it’s 5,200 and something.

The Write-a-thon is off to a good start and I’m pleased with that. Not that all the words are in the right order or will stay in the edited version! It’s out and out first draft crap, but I do think I have the seeds of a good story here.

My plan is to have a rough first draft done before I go back to work on April 12. Then I can spend at least a month editing and polishing, before I send it off for my Romantic Novelists’ Association New Writers’ Scheme entry. Then revise it, based on their feedback. Then sub a partial to Superromance. And get on with the next story in the series while I’m waiting.

The main issue I found with my writing today is that I want to be too nice to my characters. The conflict is there, built into the characters and the scenario. But I’m not mining it. I nearly had my heroine forgive her estranged mother as soon as they met again after eight years. Same with the hero. They are all being too nice to each other for people who wounded each other so badly in the past.

Instant forgiveness ain’t gonna happen! They have to suffer first, there has to be a slow emotional change, not a sudden, “Oh, you’re sick now and sorry for what you did, I forgive you,” with her mother, and “I understand why you did what you did so it’s all okay,”  with the hero and heroine.  It’s so much easier to write that than have them do a guarded dance around each other, one step forward one step back, drop their defences piece by piece, go through hurt and anguish over the situation and their feelings and the possibility of redemption. But that’s the way it has to be. They need to earn their happy ending.


4 Responses to “Day One progress”

  1. Jane Holland Says:

    Fabulous word count! Very well done!!

  2. Eileen Says:

    Great word count!

    You sound like you have my problem! Instead of “not letting bad things happen” to my characters I keep making them act politely. This is a novel people! Start behaving badly, already!

  3. Wow! That’s an awesome word count, well done! I know what you mean about the niceness, I keep having that sneak into my stuff too. I think my problem is that I’m basically a peacekeeper. I don’t like confrontation in real life, so I keep having my h and h smooth things over when really they have to hurt!
    Heres to making it tough….

  4. waitingforthecall Says:

    Thanks guys!
    That’s exactly the problem. How do writers who are peacekeepers and conflict avoiders in real life get their story people into the deep trouble theat’s needed for an emotionally satifying story?

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