Wednesday, 27 January 2010

No really, I'll be more reliable this time...

Oh dear.

I seem to have abandoned my blog.

Not that I was ever particularly reliable.

So where was I? Oh yes, I was throwing together my first draft, and getting lots of fabulous advice from the lovely Winchester writers’ conference. After a lot more scribbling I have one wobbly story that needs a lot of work. This means I’m now either struggling up the editing mountain, or mired in its treacle depending on whose metaphor I’m stealing today! I thought 2 large whiteboards either side of my desk might help me sort out my plot, character, pace – um, problems. They also help with making it looking like I’m doing something, rather than just staring into space. Trouble is they’re full already! I think I need to focus on one problem at a time, rather than attempting to empty the contents of my head onto them.
I’ve started with sub-plots as they seem the weakest element so far. My cast of characters are all busy getting on with generally ruining my main character’s life, but I don’t think they really know why. I have no idea what they all want, how they plan to get it, or how they might all interact with each other a bit more. I’m trying to use “The weekend novelist redrafts the novel” by Robert J Ray and “Writing the breakout novel workbook” by Donald Maas” but seem to end up sitting there reading them rather than applying the techniques… I’m also slightly scared of the hard-line approach of the first book. Apparently I’m not allowed any trips, breaks or fun. Since I’m also throwing in some evenings I’ve decided to follow his advice, um, selectively.
This allows me to do a bit of re-locating for some of my work too. A spa. No, really, it’s perfectly logical! No phones, nobody I know, and I’m expected to lounge about for the day. It’s perfect. Not somewhere I ever saw myself going considering I don’t know one end of a make-up brush from the other, and walk on heels as well as any toddler, but it’s lovely. I get 6 visits a year, and for those 6 days there is no house to be tidied, ringing phones or lists of things to do. Except for the endless list of things to fix in my novel, but anyway, well worth the splurge! So I’m booked for Saturday, shall go armed with a pukka pad, and enjoy that it shall smell evermore of their aromatherapy oils. Scented notebooks, someone should look into that.


Anonymous said...

I'm still here, watching from the side lines. Do let us know how you get on.

Annieye said...

Absolute perfect heaven, Denise! I too am a bit backward in the make-up/aromatherapy/diet/exercise/fashion department, but a day away from the tangled chaos of everyday life is very tempting.

Let us know how you get on.

Fia said...

Are you going to do the floating in darkness treatment? I always thought that might be good for mulling over novel but then again it might be plain scary.

What are the main three disasters in your novel? If you can arrange them into the three arc structure, I find it helps. Lost your number. Again. Ashamed.

Anonymous said...

I hope you have a great time! sounds like Heaven!can't I come along aswell? I'd be terrified to do that floatation thing, my sister loves it!
Writing wise you sound rushed off your feet, I had a good week last week but I have a feeling this week is going down hill fast. Am reading that writing book by that guy who wants you to write a novel in a month! someone Baty...(his name..mind gone blank but def so and so Baty.) Quite a good book but I prefer Janes as its more realistic:)

Denise said...

Cap'n - Watching and waiting to dive back in yourself sometime soon?

Annie - Ooh, it was bliss. Lounging about on a recliner whilst scribbling is great. Having somebody make my lunch was even better!

Fia - I did the floatation the first time I went and it was mostly lovely, if slightly odd. I found the water a bit too hot, but I did fall asleep in there, which is very strange when you wake up and wonder where you are!

I shall try the 3 disasters thing. Anything to impose some structure in the chaos... Shall e-mail my number later!

MotherX - Book in a month, no thanks! I highly recommend a lazy day at the spa. You can try the floatation in a smaller pool as well, which isn't in the dimmed light of the bigger one. Good fun to try once!