Preface: (Lol!) I don’t consider myself to be talented when it comes to writing stories with a strong romantic subplot. I love to read them, but many times I mess up somewhere when trying write them. And because of this, I often delegate any romantic elements to subplot C, if it’s lucky. There’s nothing wrong with this. If you don’t need romance, you don’t need it. But when I got my new mish-mash of paranormal, horror, and supernatural elements, I realized it would have to have a heavy romantic subplot. And my first thought was a groan, followed by, “Yeah, it’s going to have that mush in there.” (To clarify, I was talking to someone at the time. But I do quite often talk to myself, so this aside is pointless.)
I got the basic plot line down right away. I can’t tell you how much I LOVE it when this happens! This was followed by a tagline (something I’ve never bothered to write before) and a blurb/starter query!! Then I made it official. My official next main project. Complete with one of my brand new recycled paper composition books to take notes in and scratch down whatever it is I scratch down when I’m working on something. I had no idea what I was doing, but I realized something interesting: I was NOT worried about the romantic subplot. And this was super exciting for me because I haven’t gone into a story containing strong romantic elements with any measure of confidence since I was in high school. (So sad.)
This idea took me by surprise in every since of the word. I wasn’t looking for an idea at the time (in fact I was overwhelmed by ideas & getting slightly peeved every time a new one popped up — but I would freak if I forgot one so there ya go). It started on a nice balmy Thursday afternoon. =^_^= I was having coffee with a friend that’s thinking about turning a children’s book she’s written into a horror story for adults (though my brain translated that into novel, which would be her first novel!) and I immediately got excited and screamed (in the softest possible way) “DO IT!!!” And not even fifteen minutes later, she’s like, “You know what you should write about…”
I could have smacked her. Seriously. I was just reading earlier that day that if there’s a book you want to read and can’t find, write it yourself! But she insists she doesn’t have the patience to write a novel. So, despite being highly skeptical about it myself, I wrote the little spawn of an idea down anyway. Eh, why not? After all, I don’t ever know what I want to read until I find it. And we write what we like to read. So I added it to the cue just in case, but I didn’t expect anything to come out of it. I knew I could do it, of course, I can write anything. (Ha, ha) But I was honestly thinking, “I have never ever ever thought about writing a story with something like that in it.” And it showed all over my face. But something about it struck a cord in me and unbeknownst to me, she had just handed me the seed that would become a story that I’ve become quite enamored with. If it gets published, I totally have a mental note to thank her on the dedication page. 🙂
Ideas are interesting things. My previous story was inspired by a comical Xena, Warrior Princess episode. I have one in the works that came out of the blue. And one more on standby that was inspired by a Temple Run game. Lol! I wasn’t looking for a story any of those times. I do love surprises!
I get scared to try new things with my writing, especially after I’ve tried and failed. I’ve looked at my past romantic anything attempts and have been like, “Wow, this sucks…this is SO not something you’re good at.” Which not only isn’t true, (though I have little evidence to support this) but if I hadn’t kept trying in spite of myself, I highly doubt I would be writing this story right now. And it’s kind of awesome. Lol! But taking chances and stretching yourself is how you get better and grow as a writer. After all, trying again is the only way to succeed at anything.
Side Note: The funnest part so far happened during the pre-planning stage when I was tackling that oh so tedious super fun task of picking names. I had the hardest time with my antagonist, but when I finally got her name right she creeped me out so much that I only interviewed her long enough to learn what I needed to start the story. Lol! Which is going well. ^_^ Almost 30% through as of last night according to my bright green progress bar.
Here’s a quote that was on my calendar last month that I want to share because it’s helping me not freak out the elements I’m not used to: “A man would do nothing if he waited until he could do it so well that no one would find fault with what he has done.” (Cardinal Newman)
And here’s another quote I want to share: I forget where I saw it, so I might be paraphrasing, but it came with a picture of the liberty bell. “Forget your perfect offering. Everything has a crack in it. That’s how the light gets in.”
^_^ Hope things are going well for you guys!