As is tradition here on The Narcissistic Rose, whenever I move another project to the finished pile, I like to reflect on it and what I learned while I was writing it. ^_^
**Amazing things can happen when you trust yourself and the characters to tell the story.
**I’ve learned to embrace my half-panster nature. I don’t have everything figured out before I start, and that’s okay.
**Don’t skimp on the sleep and still expect to be able to write the next day. If I stay up to finish a chapter one night, I’m pretty much no freaking good the next day.
Complications & Solutions
So, some of you may have heard…seen my griping/whining/yakking about the ups and down that I’ve had with this story, but it actually didn’t get off to a rocky start. It got off to a great start! So, this is what happened: I wanted help with my query because they’re not the easiest things for me to write (haha), so I thought, “Hey, why not get a bit of my story looked at while I’m at it?” After all, I still wasn’t completely confident in my first person skills, so if there was anything I was doing that was, for lack of a better word, horribly and irrevocably distracting, I thought it was a good idea to go ahead and stop making those mistakes before I got too far along. I had just started Chapter 4 when this happened, and I was stuck, so I figured a break was also in order.
SO, I hear back from the awesome Julie Butcher, and it wasn’t torn apart! No worries. But there were…things. Lol! So, I tried to fix these things, and in the process I almost threw the story out. The only reason I didn’t was because I really, REALLY wanted to write it. That’s it. So after beating my head against a wall for a week, I asked one of my writing buddies to PLEASE look over my new (and not improved) chapter for me even though I know she’s super busy.
She was more than happy to help out because she’s awesome like that and got back to me after a week with sympathies, encouragement, and too many notes. So I went back to the drawing board and sat my weird-ass MC down and had a chat. I wasn’t going to force her to change, but I needed to balance her out some, and I also wanted to know if there was anywhere else we could start the story because Julie suggested that I might have started it too late, even if it was just a few paragraphs too late.
An amicable solution was reached between MC Taryn and I, and we both agreed that it was a good thing I got stuck on Chapter 4 because if I had gotten too much further, I would have had a huge mess on my hands. As it is, I only had 3 chapters to make changes to, so I went back to the beginning and rewrote and reorganized until I didn’t feel stressed anymore. I finally made it past chapter 4 after being stuck on it for nearly a month and finished the rest of the story relatively bump-free. As in, I did not have a middle of the story freak out like I usually do! It was shocking. And awesome. 🙂
This is by far the most I have ever worked on a first chapter, and I’m not going to lie, it was really unpleasant. I thought this story was worth fighting for though so I did it, but I hope it doesn’t happen again anytime soon. ^_^
**I met and exceeded my word count goal for the first time! I was so happy, I literally shed tears over it.
**I finished my first 1st person POV story in 13 years!
**I learned a lot of interesting things about myself as a writer, namely that when I don’t know where to go with the plot, not to force it, not even the tiniest bit, and just sit back and let the characters tell me where to go.
l learned how to push through difficult times, when honestly, most of the time, when I run into problems like this, I quit. So, that was good for me. ^^ And one thing this story has given me is the confidence to trust myself when I have no idea what I’m doing. ^^
I actually finished the last round of edits on the 14th @ 5:50 in the morning to much jumping up and down, but as is typical, I’m just now getting around to popping the cap on some virtual Blueberry Wine (which is AMAZING). Blueberry Wine for all! ^_^
cue totally sober karaoke solo “We Are The Champions”
I can’t wait to get started on my next insanely awesome project, but until then you can find me with my nose a book, not obsessively checking my email. ^_^