Read Books By AWers!

Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

editing for authors ad

A publisher or agency using Google ads to solicit your novel probably isn't anyone you want to write for.


Go Back   Absolute Write Water Cooler > General Writing Interest > Young Adult
Register FAQ Calendar Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 01-13-2013, 09:07 PM   #1
breaking_burgundy
Takiran Code Scholar
 
breaking_burgundy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 518
breaking_burgundy has a spectacular aura
Two plotlines diverged in the woods...

Have you ever had an issue when you had to choose between two slightly different plot/subplot arcs or writing a particular scene two different ways?

Without having a fully complete novel, how do you know which one will work best for your story? Should I just write both versions of this scene and see which I like better?
__________________
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Blogs are for people who have opinions, right?

I also tweet.
breaking_burgundy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 09:12 PM   #2
missesdash
You can't sit with us!
 
missesdash's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Paris, France
Posts: 6,847
missesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsmissesdash is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Quote:
Originally Posted by breaking_burgundy View Post
Have you ever had an issue when you had to choose between two slightly different plot/subplot arcs or writing a particular scene two different ways?

Without having a fully complete novel, how do you know which one will work best for your story? Should I just write both versions of this scene and see which I like better?
EVERY TIME ALWAYS

Sorry for yelling, but this is essentially my biggest writing 'issue' or even 'quirk'

I take it to such extremes that I generally have two version of each MS. So yeah, I definitely write both. And then sometimes I still can figure out which is better. But most of the time I can. Sure it's annoying to scrap so much work, but often you won't know it's totally lame until it's on the page.
missesdash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 10:01 PM   #3
thebloodfiend
Cory
 
thebloodfiend's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Albuquerque
Posts: 3,761
thebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsthebloodfiend is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
I have an MS I've re-written three times simply because I couldn't figure out which POV to write it in. I've also taken several plotlines out of it and just simplified it down.

And I have another MS I've just stopped working on because it's hurting my head. I've written it de-linearnly, linearly, made the MC asexual, then bisexual, given him a gun, taken the gun away and replaced it with a bomb.

Just rewrite both and see which version people like most. That's worked for me.
thebloodfiend is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 10:04 PM   #4
breaking_burgundy
Takiran Code Scholar
 
breaking_burgundy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 518
breaking_burgundy has a spectacular aura
It's not the first time I've had this problem, but usually I manage to choose one based on a) what are the characters most likely to do, b) which version has more tension/drama, c) which version is "tighter."

The problem with this scene is that I can make it from two potential POVs (MC vs New Character). I like the New Character one better, but then I don't get to show a certain dialogue exchange between MC and other characters in this scene.
__________________
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Blogs are for people who have opinions, right?

I also tweet.
breaking_burgundy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 10:23 PM   #5
The_Ink_Goddess
the not happened yet
 
The_Ink_Goddess's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: England
Posts: 1,918
The_Ink_Goddess leaves trails of profuse coolnessThe_Ink_Goddess leaves trails of profuse coolnessThe_Ink_Goddess leaves trails of profuse coolnessThe_Ink_Goddess leaves trails of profuse coolnessThe_Ink_Goddess leaves trails of profuse coolness
Quote:
Originally Posted by missesdash View Post
EVERY TIME ALWAYS

Sorry for yelling, but this is essentially my biggest writing 'issue' or even 'quirk'

I take it to such extremes that I generally have two version of each MS. So yeah, I definitely write both. And then sometimes I still can figure out which is better. But most of the time I can. Sure it's annoying to scrap so much work, but often you won't know it's totally lame until it's on the page.
This is me.

This is always me.

It's also made worse by the fact that I find it generally impossible to crit my own work on a broad scale (I can do the "this sentence is clumsy" part, but the "does this plot point drag on too long?" and "is this ending plausible?" part totally eludes me - like the broader scale of the MS). I always Frankenstein my ideas together and then wonder if I should let one stand as is. And I hate scrapping tons of work - doesn't everybody?
__________________
--Beth.

When not crying, sleeping, writing or studying, I tweet here

How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.
- A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh
The_Ink_Goddess is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-13-2013, 10:56 PM   #6
adipose
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Washington, D.C.
Posts: 46
adipose is on a distinguished road
I have had so many doubts about the best way to do this MS. I've already resigned myself to changing the setting, but at different times I've considered switching from 3rd person to 1st person, changing my contemporary fantasy to an epic fantasy... but eventually I figured I need to finish the version I have, rewrite the parts I know need rewriting and see if it will work as is, otherwise I'll just have a thousand partially finished shitty versions instead of one maybe decent one.
adipose is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-14-2013, 07:00 PM   #7
Debbie V
Mentoring Myself and Others
 
Debbie V's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: New York
Posts: 2,236
Debbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolness
Often you have to pass the scene to figure out how it will fit the work better. You may not know which to use until you've written the end of the novel and can look back at the context around that scene. You could write it from both POVs or use a place holder (outline of the action or some such) and come back to it. I'd probably write both and see if I found myself referring back to one version or the other more as I continued on.
Debbie V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 03:34 AM   #8
breaking_burgundy
Takiran Code Scholar
 
breaking_burgundy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 518
breaking_burgundy has a spectacular aura
Quote:
Originally Posted by Debbie V View Post
Often you have to pass the scene to figure out how it will fit the work better. You may not know which to use until you've written the end of the novel and can look back at the context around that scene. You could write it from both POVs or use a place holder (outline of the action or some such) and come back to it. I'd probably write both and see if I found myself referring back to one version or the other more as I continued on.
That was the problem: this was a re-write. I had two previously written scenes, and I wasn't sure which to use for this purpose. In the end, I found a way to include both.
__________________
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Blogs are for people who have opinions, right?

I also tweet.
breaking_burgundy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 03:55 AM   #9
Becca C.
Recovering Canucks Fan
 
Becca C.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Google says 1 hour, 8 minutes north of Vancouver, BC
Posts: 3,620
Becca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputationBecca C. has a double-platinum reputation
This is the reason I've decided to outline my next WIP a lot more extensively than I've ever outlined anything before.

I end up with a million different versions of a manuscript and not knowing what parts of what versions are the best. That's where all my writerly angst comes from. I think I need to start outlining like crazy and sorting the plot shit out before it even gets written so I can tell what sucks right away.
__________________
MAYBE IN PARIS - YA contemporary - second round of agent revisions
& several other WIPs I'm playing around with

Now represented by Rebecca Podos of Rees Literary!
Becca C. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2013, 04:43 AM   #10
Moon Daughter
practical experience, FTW
 
Moon Daughter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: The Moon
Posts: 1,758
Moon Daughter leaves trails of profuse coolnessMoon Daughter leaves trails of profuse coolnessMoon Daughter leaves trails of profuse coolnessMoon Daughter leaves trails of profuse coolnessMoon Daughter leaves trails of profuse coolness
I think most of us (maybe even everyone?) have had this problem to an extent. I've rewritten two manuscripts multiple times because I couldn't figure out where to take it. I'm in the process of doing that with my current ms as well. Usually I'll write out a summary of the story to break it down and figure out what works best for the plot.
__________________
GHOST GIRL 47,000 out of 70K
Moon Daughter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2013, 01:06 AM   #11
Windcutter
starry sunrise
 
Windcutter's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 1,900
Windcutter is a splendid one to beholdWindcutter is a splendid one to beholdWindcutter is a splendid one to behold
There is even the case when you know version A works better, but you like version B so so much. Sigh. I hate scrapping work, so I try to pick up all those branching ideas and make a different book out of them. I also seem to have a plot/set of characters which I'm obsessed with, considering they have shown up in 4 wips so far.
Windcutter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2013, 09:54 AM   #12
Emmet Cameron
practical experience, FTW
 
Emmet Cameron's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: Canada. Probably.
Posts: 510
Emmet Cameron is well-respected
I tend to pick one, start writing, and see how far it gets me. If it leads to lots of exciting and wonderful things that I definitely want in my book, yay. If it doesn't, back to the diverging point and take the other path. Trial and error. I don't think I could do that write-both-then-choose thing. I guess it's functionally the same but for some reason it makes my Libra-decidey-brain implode to imagine choosing between two already written scenarios if neither of them has obviously failed yet.
__________________
* * * * * * * * * * *
Twitter
Tumblr
Emmet Cameron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2013, 11:55 PM   #13
Hilldawg
practical experience, FTW
 
Hilldawg's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Colorado
Posts: 158
Hilldawg is on a distinguished road
I explore both options via brainstorming. I keep a notebook for my novel and every time I get to one of these waypoints, I take the time to scribble notes on both (or more) possibilities. I try not to waste a lot of time writing both out. Writing all possibilities out ups the chances of me becoming even more conflicted (because, yes, its hard to scrap the work). So I stick to notes.

And once I do decide on a way to go, I don't scratch out or throw away any of my notes on the choice I didn't make. I just hang onto it - those pages stay in my notebook with a small red "x" in the corner. If it turns out I do need to use some of those thoughts later, I still have them. And if I don't, it's still fun to go back and see the progression of my novel. Sometimes you need to be in the tough position of having to choose between two alternatives in order to make the right move.

Hillary
__________________
HD
Hilldawg is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2013, 09:47 PM   #14
Liosse de Velishaf
Who rules?! Hyrules!
 
Liosse de Velishaf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Second star on the right and on 'til morning.
Posts: 8,843
Liosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsLiosse de Velishaf is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
This happens to me often. And many times it's more than just two versions. I don't always write each scene out, but I do two or three if the first one seems like it's not quite working.

It's kind of a what's in my brain isn't on the page thing, sometimes.
Liosse de Velishaf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2013, 12:20 AM   #15
Debbie V
Mentoring Myself and Others
 
Debbie V's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: New York
Posts: 2,236
Debbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolnessDebbie V leaves trails of profuse coolness
With my current WIP I started in the wrong place once and in the wrong voice once. The voice change meant redoing three to four chapters. The wrong place one? I wrote the whole manuscript and then figured it out, but I'll have half of book 2 if book one does well (Book one now has 2 protagonists and one isn't in the original draft.)

Glad you found a way to use both scenes. No writing is ever wasted.
Debbie V is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2013, 01:34 AM   #16
Sage
Hero, villain, angel, demon
AW Moderator
 
Sage's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: In the TARDIS, next stop: Everywhere
Posts: 51,076
Sage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsSage is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Quote:
Originally Posted by breaking_burgundy View Post
Have you ever had an issue when you had to choose between two slightly different plot/subplot arcs or writing a particular scene two different ways?

Without having a fully complete novel, how do you know which one will work best for your story? Should I just write both versions of this scene and see which I like better?
This can definitely stop me in my tracks when I'm writing and I don't know how a scene should play out and could create wildly different plot arcs. I stress about it for ages, go with one version while telling myself I can always change it if it doesn't work, doubt that version for a long time but never change it, and eventually make something happen in the plot that guarantees that I had to use that route, thus justifying it to myself
__________________


Love Sucks - Musa Publishing, B&N, Amazon
"Fireflies" - Absolute Visions


A Paranormal Bromance: Revising

Super/Human (Hero/Villain 2): NaNoWriMo

This week, I'm in: Connecticut and New Jersey
Sage is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2013, 01:41 AM   #17
blacbird
That hairy-handed gent
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Who ran amok in Kent
Posts: 29,548
blacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate complimentsblacbird is so great that we've run out of appropriate compliments
Two plotlines diverged in the manuscript,
And I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference,

Dammit.

(apologies to Robert Frost)

caw
__________________
"Badger! Badger! The weasels have stolen my motor-car!"

"Frankly, Toad, I don't give a damn."

-- Gone with the Wind in the Willows
blacbird is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-22-2013, 12:03 PM   #18
pencil bot
New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Pasadena, CA
Posts: 9
pencil bot is on a distinguished road
it's hard to pick. I tend to go with the more concrete one, the one where I know what will happen in the future. Although I have gone with the less definite one, without knowing where the story would end.
pencil bot is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Custom Search

If this site is helpful to you,
Please consider a voluntary subscription to defray ongoing expenses.

Buy Scrivener 2 for Mac OS X (Regular Licence)


All times are GMT +4.5. The time now is 12:58 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.