Saturday, January 29, 2011

Torn Between Two Covers

Well not the covers really.  More what's on the inside.  But that doesn't really remind you of the song and that's kinda what I was going for.

What am I talking about?

Well ever since we got the results back from the New Voices competition last year I have been banging away on a single title manuscript and while it's going okay I sorta got stuck.

And I know that getting stuck, or writer's block, or whatever you like to call it can mean one or so of several things:
  • You've gone down the wrong path and this is your psyche's way of telling you that you've taken a wrong turn; or
  • You're trying to make your characters do things they just wouldn't do; or
  • You haven't planned enough, plotting enough or you suck as a pantser; or
  • You need a break to weigh up which of the above is the correct answer and decide what to do about it.
Me, I think it's a case of the last one.  I'm not sure what I've done wrong but at the moment it's like wading through old jelly (you know the stuff that's been in the fridge for about 3-4 days and parts of it are going hard like garishly coloured leather?) well you get the idea - it's not fun.

And it used to be fun.  And I want it to be fun again.

I still like my story.  I still love the characters.  And I still believe that it's appealing and so worth writing.  I'm just stuck.

So aside from moaning about it, what am I going to do?  Well this is where the torn between two covers reference becomes clearer: I've started writing another category.  I'm plotting at the moment but I have written the opening scene.

I had to because the imagery just wouldn't leave me alone.  It plagued me like the memory of some nefarious act I had committed while under the influence of something noxious and hammered my resistance with seductive whisperings and flirty images. 

And anyone who knows me knows that I'm no good at resisting temptation.

So I caved and started writing.  And now I'm in love with two other characters.  I'm so fickle!

But I'm having fun again.  And right now (can you believe I almost typed 'write now'?  Whoa!  Freudian or what?) anyway right now I need to be able to just let 'er rip and write myself into happiness and then once firmly ensconced in that state I will then tackle the big question of What Is Wrong With My Manuscript.

Sounds like a plan to me.  So let me introduce you to my new word counter.  Ladies and gentlemen, please meet Evan and Leila.


Talei said...

Loving the new title! ;)

I've been tossing up on my WIP title and it still isn't quite right so totally feeling this post right now. I think when we're relaxed and having fun, things seem to flow alot easily.

Hope you're having a fab weekend!

Jackie Ashenden said...

Woohoo, go Elissa! I always have at least a couple of WIPs on the go so if I get bored/stuck with one, I can keep writing with another. Works for me anyway.
As to being stuck, sometimes it's tricky to know what to do huh? With me it could be everything you list, and sometimes it's just me not getting into the right head-space, if that makes sense. I can think myself into it though and when that happens, I get past the hard part really quickly. Should do it more often really. :-)

Nas Dean said...

Thanks for the great advice!

Elissa Graham said...

Talei - Titles are such funny things aren't they? I get stuck up on them all the time - it took me ages to come up with the one for my NV entry. This one has me thinking HARD!

Jackie - I should have known that such a creative soul like you would have more than one iron in the fire! I've always been so concerned about the shiny new idea and not finishing something that it never occurred to me that it was okay to work on several pieces at once and just commit to finishing them all ... someday :)

Nas - always happy to help but it's hard to see my ramblings as advice!

Lacey Devlin said...

I'm stuck too Elissa :) I usually have more than one on the go but this time that's not solving the problem. So when in doubt, take a course ;)

Elissa Graham said...

Lacey I will definitely keep that in mind if writing the category doesn't work.