Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Yeah, but how do you pick just one project?

This is sort of a 'part 2' to my previous post so you may want to read it first.

In 2010 I did NaNoWriMo for the first time and wrote a 75k draft that I've since realised probably should be expanded into at least three books. Inspired by my NaNo success, I went on to finish the vampire story I'd started writing for a dare.

I don't know what I was thinking when I signed up for a 1kk WriYe (a million words) in 2011. I have even less idea what made me think I could write 12 drafts in a year. Somehow I actually managed to do both things, which left me with a stack of 14 complete drafts, any of which could probably be picked up as a 'serious' project in 2012.

Instead of that, though, I spent January writing some kind of weird... is self-fanfiction a thing? It was called Siana's Muse and it started with 'me' dying as a result of successfully completing my crazy 2011 goals, then being resurrected by my muse, who'd been learning necromancy while I was writing. Somehow it went from there to an adventure to try to reclaim the only known copy of Necromancy for Dummies and then there was an army of evil pixies trying to steal creative energy...

Yeah, weird stuff. If I ever make up my own book on how to write, it's going to be an evolution of that story, though.

After that I started trying to fix one of my 2011 drafts, deliberately picking the most broken one because I figured if I could fix that I could do anything. I failed and instead wrote another 1 1/2 books of a series about a half-insane former assassin who's the only person in the world who can kill a group of four wizards. I also started what's turning out to be a really long story about cross-dressing space pirates, which is apparently an awesome description of a story. I worry about it, though, because I always feel like people think my character is Jack Sparrow in a dress and that's nothing like it at all.

So, where was I? I had a point to this, I'm sure.

Okay, maybe I didn't. I'll just pretend that the point was that the end of JulNoWriMo should give me a complete series of first drafts about the crazy ex-assassin and after that I want/need to shove him in a draw for a couple of months. Toby and I need some emotional distance. Yes, you can find Toby in other places on this blog by looking up his tag. Read a couple of posts about him and you'll probably agree it's time for some emotional distance.

Hiding from Toby means I need something else to work on, though, and 'something' in this case is a blend of three drafts from last year. None of them have a complete plot (one doesn't even have a proper antagonist) but I find myself wondering if I can pull the best bits out of each one and come up with a complete story. The characters I've picked are all for it, but characters always seem to come more easily than plot.

Over August, September and October I want to pull together a plot from my three source drafts, construct a dodgy-but-usable world and start work on writing. That involves three things I don't know how to do - creating an outline, building a world and writing a draft from an outline. Should be a fun three months, right?

Oh... long rambling post doesn't say anything about the actual project. It's sci-fi/fantasy, with the last of the Imperial Knights and the heir to the throne joining forces to resurrect the sun god. Or something. Coming up with a brief synopsis is right near the top of my 'to do' list. It comes just after the part where I make up a long, rambling mess that turns out to contain interesting plot points. Next blog post maybe I'll start talking about my planning strategy.

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