As I drove home today, I realized that a strange series of events I’ve been mulling over in my mind would be the perfect opening sequence for a novel I’ve been wanting to write for years. I just spent the last hour rewriting the outline. I really want to do this now. I’m still going to spend a good deal of my writing time editing…but I think I’m going to try writing this book as well.
The thing is, the only way for this story to work is by making it fit into the literary genre. That means approaching the novel from a third person present standpoint–something I have never been good at. This will be good practice. I’m starting to wonder why all my favorite authors stick to a single genre. I like trying them all like I’m at a buffet. Sci-fi here. Mystery there. First person here. Third Person there. I love them all…so long as I get to express myself in a new and interesting way.
I remember all the tipsI found about writing when I was a teenager. It was all great advice. It’s just that I didn’t understand all of them. One was: “Don’t find time to write. Make time to write.” For a high school student, this idea was brilliant. I kept failing to write anything of length because there was always so much else to do. Forcing yourself to write is one of the best things a writer can do for themselves.
As I quickly approach the district’s summer holiday, I realize there is a new layer to this advice. It’s one thing to make room for writing in your day. It is another thing entirely to make room for writing in your life. I substitute teach and take odd jobs because it allows me to focus on writing and (most importantly) write every single day. Lately, I only take about two days off a month from writing/editing. I make the decision to write on a daily basis. But I also take it into account when i make decisions about my life.
And I wouldn’t change a thing.
I have about 15,000 words left to write. Considering I am hitting the final climax over the next two chapters, my closing actions will be about 10,000 words. I’ve never really thought about this before. How much closing action is too much? How much is too little? In my first two novels, I didn’t think about this much because they were part of a trilogy. With my third novel, everything was quick so I did the same with the end.
I hate making things back and white. I know that the outline I have is perfect to conclude this story. But, as I look at the numbers, I wish the concluding action wasn’t 1/8th of the novel. I won’t honestly worry about it until I get there. Too often do I think about the numbers then I realize that certain chapters will be twice as long as others. I’m just thinking about too much, I guess. I just need to write, write, write, and wrap this thing up.
I have hit 50,000 words in what will be my fourth novel. Of late, I have done some research and determined that it will fall under the “Commercial Fiction” section (although that section is rather broad). With 20,000-30,000 words left to work with, I can feel the end of the story building up. All the characters are in the right spots. The storyline has progressed beautifully. I don’t think I’ve even been so happy with my own story before.
Considering I did not have an extensive outline as I wrote this book, I know the edit job will be a bit of a a hassle. I am already making note of a few of the problems that I have created. Some of them will be annoying. Others will be easy. I’m just glad that it doesn’t bother me all that much yet. When I was younger, I used to not be able to move on until I took care of every problem in the story. It’s the main reason why I never finished anything when I was younger. It’s fascinating how much progress you make in your own writing style with each and every piece you produce.
I don’t have an update for you today. I promise I’ll get some sort of update for you tomorrow. Today, instead, I want your thoughts on novel length. I’ve spent the last three days in solitude and have pumped 5,000 words into a new novel. With the creative juices flowing, I don’t plan on limiting what comes out. Still, I can’t help but think about the possibility of getting something published some day. With that in mind, I know full well that novel length is important.
My first novel was far too long for a Young Adult Novel (or any novel by someone who isn’t already published). Fire Saviors was 123,000 Words. My second novel–The Saints–was a publishable length at 76,000 Words. Too bad it was a sequel. My third novel was far too short for literary/mystery fiction: Only 46,000 Words. Although I don’t consider word length all that important compared to content, I know it plays a role. In order to give my new novel a solid chance at being picked up, I know it needs to fall within a certain length.
I’m pretty sure that length is about 70,000-100,000. Ideal length is somewhere around 70,000-80,000. I want to know what everyone else thinks on the matter. Do you even think about things like this when you write? I don’t actively think about selling my work as I write. I know what I need to do to get published on most levels…I just can’t bring myself to write for anyone but me. That’s why I have a blog that may–some day–make it harder for a publisher to take me on.
I’ve started working on what could possibly be a new novel. It feels good to be immersed in a project once again. I’ve already pushed 1,500 words into it. There are a lot of things that I will be practicing with piece. I’ll keep you updated on its progress. In the meantime, a new flash fiction.
Writing about Alzheimer’s has entered the mainstream over the past decade. It’s a difficult subject for more reasons than the obvious. Since it’s nearly impossible for those suffering from the disease to document their experience, I cannot help but wonder.
Happy Easter Weekend everybody. I’m about to head off to my friend’s 22nd birthday, so I will keep this quick. I will probably be updating a lot in the week ahead. I am staying in my hometown for a week to take care of the dogs while my parents are in Connecticut. A lot of alone time means a lot of updating. Also, I went through all my old poems and pulled out four that I will put up here soon (probably tomorrow or Monday). Until then, enjoy the new flash fiction.
While on vacation, I joined my friends at a coffee shop for several hours. This piece of flash fiction came out of left field after my fourth cup of coffee. It is one of my more unique pieces. I don’t usually deal in personification, but I love this flash fiction nonetheless.
In order to practice writing characters that do not remind me of me, I need practice writing situations that I do not normally encounter. I Miss You, Dad was a way to practice the complex emotions of dealing with death. Thirst is my attempt to enter the mind of an addict. I hope to write several more flash fiction pieces like this soon. I need the practice.
The website is now up and running. I have sample chapters from my three novels. I have three short stories. There are six flash fiction pieces. Unfortunately, I only have two poems up so far. More will be uploaded soon. I have links to my three other blogs. There are also five columns that I had published in the local newspaper. I also have links to my ghostwriting and a full list of the books that I have read.
As I upload more in the future, I will update the blog to share my progress on certain projects as well as link the newly uploaded work. I wrote a flash fiction piece today that I hope to upload sometime within the next week. I am also working on a couple fiction pieces and non-fiction pieces. I need to decide which one to pursue in the days ahead. I have a feeling that a dystopian story is something that I will pursue.
Thank you for all the support. Let me know what you think.
I am exhausted. After working for several hours, the About Me, Columns, and Ghostwriting tabs are now compeltely finished. I have put a lot of working into the blog section and will have it up and running first thing in the morning. After that, the real work will begin.
Tomorrow I will focus on posting my poetry, short stories, flash fiction, and novel excerpts. Why you are waiting, feel free to look over all that I have uploaded so far. In the About Me section is a link to all of my work before the age of 18–it is rough but gives you a general idea of where my writing originated.
Thank you to everyone who has followed me so far–adamarmour, stellamarr, mothstoaflame, Jordan, ladyromp, MesAyah, and ClownPonders. I assure you that I will return the sentiment as soon as I am done piecing this website together.