Monday, November 9, 2015

Beautiful Books—The Writing Process

Beautiful People (Or, Beautiful Books during NaNoWriMo) is a linkup hosted by Cait at Paper Fury and Sky at Further Up and Further In. You can learn more about it on their blogs, but the general idea is to answer ten questions about your writing.

Here are this month's questions with my answers (dealing with my fantasy novel):

1. Is the book turning out how you thought it would be, or is it defying your expectations?
I'm not even sure any more. Half the time I love the story and the characters and half the time I despise the story and the characters because I don't think I'll ever be able to write them right. I suppose I thought that, by the second draft, I'd be a little more settled in the story so, in that way, it's defying gravity—I mean, defying my expectations.

2. What’s your first sentence (or paragraph)?
Once upon a time, there was a Wicked Witch. Like most Witches of the evil persuasion, this Witch had big plans to take over the world. Only one simple question stood in her way: How? The other Witches and warlocks in her village by the seaside didn’t approve of her evil inclinations (having inclinations of their own, both Wicked and benign) and wouldn’t help her, so the Wicked Witch left them to search for power on her own.
Little did the Witch know, that her quest could have ended with the power provided by Energizer.
3. Are you a plotter or a pantser? Have you ever tried both methods and how did it turn out?
I used to be a pantser when I was younger, but my stories never got past the first chapter. It took a novel-writing class to show me that I could plan out my stories and know exactly where to take them. Since then, I have been a plotter, though I do leave things vague-ish so that if inspiration sends me a whimsy, I can follow it.
4. What do you reward yourself with after meeting a goal?
Usually with an episode of one of my favorite TV shows.
5. What do you look for in a name? Do you have themes and where do you find your names?
Whenever I see or hear a cool name, I write it down. Oddly enough, I usually find names on worship music when I'm on the worship team at church. There are some really weird musician names out there. If a new character shows up, I don't usually spend a lot of time searching for names, but instead pull one out of my brain that I think would fit the character. Sometimes I look on baby name sites.
6. What is your favourite to write: beginning, middle, or end — and why?
I think I most like to write the middle of stories because that's where all the action happens. I'm always worried that my beginnings will be too slow. As for endings, I'm just terrible at writing those because I always leave things open-ended just in case I ever want to write a sequel in the future.
7. Who’s your current favourite character in your novel?
Ugh. I'm tired of them all.
Well, maybe Finn. I had the HARDEST time writing him both in the first draft and the first half of the second draft. Then, I changed one tiny detail about his life and he's become so much easier to write! Funny how that happens. He used to be one of my least favorites because I had no clue how to write him, but now I'm really enjoying his character.
8. What kind of things have you researched for this project, and how do you go about researching? (What’s the weirdest thing you’ve researched?!)
I've researched various mythical beasts for this story—mostly sirens and alkonosts and another mythical bird-like creatures. I'm a terrible researcher, so my method is usually typing whatever I need into Google and reading the Wikipedia page on it.
9. Do you write better alone or with others? Do you share your work or prefer to keep it to yourself?
Definitely alone. I hate sharing my work with others until I know that it's semi-decent.
10. What are your writing habits? Is there a specific snack you eat? Do you listen to music? What time of day do you write best? Feel free to show us a picture of your writing space!
Hmm... I don't know if I have any writing habits. Or a specific snack that I eat. I drink a lot of water (and, as a result, have to get up to go to the bathroom a lot, which is annoying. Actually, half the time I just bring my laptop with me so I can continue to write... but you didn't need to know that).
I always listen to music while I write. Lately, I've been listening to Gustav Holst's "The Planets" and musical theater songs.
I'm not sure what time of day I write best either. Maybe early afternoon? Or the evening? Or maybe the morning? Any time I'm feeling productive, I suppose.
Feel free to answer these questions yourself and link up on Cait's blog!
Live long and prosper.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting answers and congrats on your success with Finn. It's a great feeling when the lights come on for a character and you're right, sometimes it just takes a subtle change for everything to fall into place.

    I'm not very good at research either, I'd much rather just make things up on the fly.

    So how far along are you on this latest draft? You need to find a progress bar and put in on your website so we can see how you're doing. I find such things also help me feel as I'm grinding towards my goal of completion.