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View Full Version : New Year, same old goals...



ClaraBrooks
01-15-2014, 12:00 PM
At the beginning of 2013 I set myself the not too ambitious goal of finishing the novel that I'd started writing in ... 2008. It wasn't so much a case of writer's block, but a crisis of self-confidence, a lack of belief that I'd ever be good enough to write a novel, that stopped me from working everytime I picked it up - so I swore to myself that no matter what happened in 2013 I'd finish some kind of draft, even if it were to be later consigned to the flames.

Well, naturally, things didn't turn out so simply and yet again I didn't finish the draft. I managed two chapters before getting sidelined and writing a bunch of short story erotica. I ended up spending 6 months last year just writing erotica and at the end of it I'd decided to throw the towel in on that novel. As it happens, I actually quite liked what I was writing and I ended up feeling that, even though I still had no draft, I'd improved as a writer quite a lot in 2013.

I re-read my novel drafts (4 chapters so far) - wasn't impressed. But I finished 2013 deciding that I still liked some of the ideas and concepts and I WOULD FINISH IT.

So, my modest goal of 2014 is not so dissimilar from the failed goal of 2013. I'm going to attempt to have HALF of my novel drafted. Keep it simple I say. Wish me luck!

Undercover
01-15-2014, 03:40 PM
Good luck!;)

Phaeal
01-15-2014, 06:15 PM
To hell if you're good enough. Doing is what makes good.

Onward!

Raivnor
01-15-2014, 06:41 PM
Don't be afraid to scrap things from your 4 chapters if you feel it isn't working. I had a novel that I came up with in the very similar feeling year of 2009. I had a bunch of other projects at the time, but I sketched some notes anyway. I was so excited at the time that I started writing it, but petered out a few chapters in. When I found myself with the time this year, I looked at the part I had written and felt very unimpressed.

So I put aside those first few chapters then made a list of everything I thought the story was missing the first time through. The freedom of starting fresh, combined with the knowledge I had already built up about the characters, allowed me to tell the story the way the 2013 me would, not the 2009 me. Because the 2013 me is a better writer, I finished the whole thing and was actually very satisfied with the result.

The point being, if you feel like you're trying to write yourself uphill, why not change directions?

Siri Kirpal
01-15-2014, 10:42 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

Sounds like you did some good writing last year.

May you achieve your goal this year!

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

ClaraBrooks
01-16-2014, 02:00 PM
Don't be afraid to scrap things from your 4 chapters if you feel it isn't working. I had a novel that I came up with in the very similar feeling year of 2009. I had a bunch of other projects at the time, but I sketched some notes anyway. I was so excited at the time that I started writing it, but petered out a few chapters in. When I found myself with the time this year, I looked at the part I had written and felt very unimpressed.

So I put aside those first few chapters then made a list of everything I thought the story was missing the first time through. The freedom of starting fresh, combined with the knowledge I had already built up about the characters, allowed me to tell the story the way the 2013 me would, not the 2009 me. Because the 2013 me is a better writer, I finished the whole thing and was actually very satisfied with the result.

The point being, if you feel like you're trying to write yourself uphill, why not change directions?

It's hard to explain one's own feelings about one's writing, and it's also rather self-indulgent. Thanks for the advice - honestly though I'm not really shy of scrapping chunks and rewriting or starting again. I try and look things over with a critical eye ... the biggest problem is, as you say, the disjunct between the 2009 writer and the 2014 writer. What I thought was pretty great in 2009 looks a little terrible now. I basically am in the position of scrapping chunks, or just using them as draft outlines. it's Ok, it's a lot of work but it's fun - I have these goals, but I don't really have any deadlines :D

ClaraBrooks
01-16-2014, 02:02 PM
Thanks everyone, it's really nice to get the encouragement, actually!!

tfang1289
01-21-2014, 07:34 AM
Good luck, you can do it!
I completely scrapped almost 15k of my book last week, because I'd decided on a major plot change =P

Koelsong
01-24-2014, 12:40 AM
It's amazing how much your writing can change in just a few years. Good luck with the redraft! And don't worry about the self-confidence thing. Doubts will always plague you. Write through them :)

M :)