"Everybody has a secret world inside of them. All of the people of the world, I mean everybody. No matter how dull and boring they are on the outside, inside them they've all got unimaginable, magnificent, wonderful, stupid, amazing worlds. Not just one world. Hundreds of them. Thousands maybe" ~ Neil Gaiman (A Game of You)


When The Going Gets Rough, I Rant

I hate my novel.

There.  That's right.  I said it.  Out loud, even as I typed.

It's boring, flimsy, plodding.  My characters are cardboard.  I have no "voice."  My 15-year old main character sounds like a 45-year old housewife.  The setting is fuzzy and nondescript, the scenes are weak and predictable.  I hate my novel.

Now, don't panic.  I had the same problem with my first novel four months before I finished the first draft.  I was madly in love with it by the time I had finished.  I still am in love with it; when I'm feeling rebellious, I plan my rewrites on it when I'm supposed to be focusing on my current work in progress.

So, I'm not going to do anything rash like abandon this story.  But I do find it interesting that I hit a huge wall of resistance at this stage of the writing process. 

I think it has something to do with fear.  I am just getting used to hearing my voice speak out through my work.  It can be quite powerful, and it surprises me.  It scares me.  I'm supposed to be the good girl, sit down, shut up, don't make waves.  With each new scene I write, I am making waves -- sometimes ripples, sometimes a tsunami.

I'll keep writing.  There is something there, under the surface, that is screaming to get out.  I'm going to let it.  One ugly scene at a time.


Sue Jackson said...

Good rant. I hope you feel better now!

It's good that you're able to recognize this is a typical phase in the writing process for you. I totally understand about fear - I get that, too.

Hang in there and push forward!


Cathryn Grant said...

I hope it's comforting on what level to see your familiar response to this phase. It sounds exciting and your post made me want to drop everything and go start a new first draft!

Shelli said...

Thanks, Sue and Cathryn. It seems like ranting is part of the break through process, too. I just wrote a really good scene, so I'm feeling a little better about it. Ha!

Renee said...

Shelli..your writing is so descriptive. I love it and your honesty here and in what you write....good you know it is a process and that fear has reared its ugly little head. I just detest that old companion....fear...

Shelli said...

Renee -- Thank you - you are such a good friend, and your encouragement is always just the pick me up I need.

Anonymous said...

I love this post, Shelli--and I must say I'm impressed you're doing so much blogging in the midst of Nano. You are amazing!

P.S. My writing sometimes scares me, too. But in a bad way. ;)