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Boarders Writing a Novel Thread 3


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Well, I've finally finished my second draft. It took a lot longer than I had hoped, mainly because it required more chapters rewritten from scratch and brand new ones than I originally thought.

So. Now I start the third draft. :)

This draft will go fast. Essentially, I'm very pleased with the current version of the manuscript, but at 192k, it's still too long. (I cut 20k in my last pass but but added about 9k of new material) The goal of this "last" draft will be to cut 10% from the total word count. No new material. Not plot holes to plug. No character changes. Just hack'n slash.

By doing around three chapters a day, I'll be able to do this in 18 days.

/crosses fingers

Then, once I get and incorporate final beta reader comments, I can start my Agent Quest, where many writers have boldly gone before.

I started a Twitter account a month or so ago and will be trying it out by Twitting my progress. Follow me if you're interested.

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Running into a fucking brick wall. Staring at pages, writing a sentence every 20 minutes...and given I don't have that much time to write, that's a waste. It's very frustrating. I hope once some work-stress subsides, I'll be back into it. (Not that I rely on inspiration to write, as that wouldn't get me anywhere, but usually I can churn out something when I sit down!)

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Running into a fucking brick wall. Staring at pages, writing a sentence every 20 minutes...and given I don't have that much time to write, that's a waste. It's very frustrating. I hope once some work-stress subsides, I'll be back into it. (Not that I rely on inspiration to write, as that wouldn't get me anywhere, but usually I can churn out something when I sit down!)

Same. Had about three productive days since posting last and then everything I mentioned earlier happened again. Hang in there!

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Hi, another dreamer here. I've been wanting to give writing a serious go for quite a while now, but for the most part have been stuck in the contemplation stages.

I have ideas I think are intriguing, some more fleshed out then others, but my problem is that I get an idea for Scene A, and Scene D, and I write them out and they turn out alright(which in my case means I don't hate myself the next day after I give them a quick once over) but when it comes to filling in Scenes B and C I turn out excrement, which then leads me to doubt the supposed quality of scenes A and D.

Yeah. Self esteem's a bitch.

Anyway... I'm not popping up to wallow in self loathing (anymore). I'm coming out of the authorial closet because you guys seem to have a nice thing going on here, and I wanted to thank all of you for posting. It's helped me take the as of yet miniscule steps I have thus far taken.

Now, I'm not sure I'm ready to throw myself too heavily into writing just yet. I think I need to read more. I know I need to learn more. I need to figure out my own point of view before I can begin to think of understanding, and then relating someone elses (elses, that word looks funny, is that a word?). I need to experience more. I need more in general.

Which is not to say I've stopped completely... One needs practice.

Stephen King says write what you know (Yeah I bought On Writing). One of the aforementioned ideas began as something of a twisted account of an actual experience I had. So I figured I'd start there and keep that one going.

It's the story of brothers, one a succesful young computer engineer/poker player who dreams of writing music, the other a failure who was once a prominent college athlete who blew his chance at the pro's and now due to his desperation finds himself becoming involved with a mysterious government faction which asks him to infiltrate a criminal orginization to set up the assassination of its boss. Their stories eventually intertwine in ways which I'm sure will be surprising and hope will be entertaining (damn self esteem issues pop up again. arrrrrrrrrrrrr).

My Scene A, Scene D stuff still applies, as the scenes that are best are the ones that began with some genuine inspiration rather than something I'm forcing myself to write because it's neccesary to fill in the gaps, but lately I've been a little better at forcing myself to just continue past any part which would have bogged me down in the past and I've gotten a little bit done on account of that.

Part of the reason I've been able to do all that is due to a short sequence I wrote which began as me just writing "What the fuck was I thinking? I can't do this." on an otherwise blank page, which I then integrated into my story as a brief prelude. That sequence I have posted here... Hopefully... I'm new to the blogging thing I haven't quite figured it out yet.

My link

It's not much at all but any thoughts (negative or positive or constructive) are welcome.

This has been a much longer post then I intended, so I guess I'll just (Soprano's Ending) (Quick cut to Black)

(Roll Credits.)

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Yesterday I opened up a short story I wrote months ago. It was about 1400 words completed but had a load of potential to be more than that. I felt like I was in the "zone" so started editing and when I was finished it had blossomed into 8000 words and counting.

I love that I can sit down and write six thousand words in a single sitting, but I hate that it only happens once or twice every couple of months.

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  • 2 weeks later...

This may be of interest to folks around here:

Sir Terry Pratchett and Transworld Publishers are proud to launch a new award for aspiring debut novelists, The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now Prize. Transworld will offer the winning author a publishing contract with a £20,000 advance.

The award will be judged by the esteemed Sir Terry Pratchett, the wise Tony Robinson, the savvy Mike Rowley from Waterstone's and two members of the editorial team at Transworld Publishers.

Sir Terry Pratchett had this to say:

"Anywhere but here, anywhen but now. Which means we are after stories set on Earth, although it may be an Earth that might have been, or might yet be, one that has gone down a different leg of the famous trousers of time (see the illustration in almost every book about quantum theory).

We will be looking for books set at any time, perhaps today, perhaps in the Rome of today but in a world where 2000 years ago the crowd shouted for Jesus Christ to be spared, or where in 1962, John F Kennedy's game of chicken with the Russians went horribly wrong. It might be one day in the life of an ordinary person. It could be a love story, an old story, a war story, a story set in a world where Leonardo da Vinci turned out to be a lot better at Aeronautics. But it won't be a story about being in an alternate Earth because the people in an alternate Earth don't know that they are; after all, you don't.

But this might just be the start. The wonderful Peter Dickinson once wrote a book that could convince you that flying dragons might have existed on Earth. Perhaps in the seething mass of alternate worlds humanity didn't survive, or never evolved -- but other things did, and they would have seen the world in a different way. The possibilities are literally endless, but remember, it's all on Earth. Maybe the continents will be different and the climate unfamiliar, but the physics will be the same as ours. What goes up must come down, ants are ant-sized because if they were any bigger their legs wouldn't carry them. In short, the story must be theoretically possible on some version of the past, present or future of a planet Earth."

The deadline for submissions will be 31 December 2010 and a shortlist of six entries will be announced on the 31 March 2011. The winner will be announced by the end May 2011.

Entrants must be over 18, have no previous published full-length works of fiction and live in the UK, Ireland or the Commonwealth. Submissions should be emailed to: [email protected]

For full terms and conditions visit www.terrypratchett.co.uk

Dust off your quills and begin!

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It'd be good to see the contract. :)

SOunds like a good deal, but most contests like this can be bad in the long run, depending on the royalty percentages and over all rights.

If anyone has something set in an alternate Earth, by all means send it in (I would if I had one), but be sure to have the contract checked out before signing on the dotted line.

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Interesting thread, and thank you all for sharing your writing process. I've had some ideas floating around that I think would make a good stand-alone novel, but have yet to commit to it, other than jotting down some notes. I don't have a lot of confidence in my chops, so I think I'll tackle a few short stories first.

My question to all of you is, what will you do with your manuscript when you finish it? Maybe this is for another thread, but I'm just curious as to who you need to contact, etc.

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