Thursday, May 17, 2012

The In Between Times

There is a sort of dangerous time for me as a writer. It's when I've finished one project and haven't quite connected with another. Why would that be dangerous? This is the time I'm most likely to leap into a new story without a lot of thought. Since I have rules about finishing what I start, not taking the time to think a story through can be very, very difficult for me.

I finished the outline to Prince of Paupers, now titled Keshi. It's going to be a novella, I think. The original story was very long, bloated and bounced all over the place with more than a few contradictions. Ah, the good old days without outlines and worrying about if anything made sense! I cut the storyline far down, reworked the logic, added a few more pieces and I'm almost ready to write it. This is the first in a set of stories in the TFAP story universe. Tales from Another Place (TFAP) is my unified fantasy world. I have many things going on there with a whole huge world to play in. Some of the problems are related to one another, though the people involved don't realize it. Not yet, anyway.

I'm not sure when I will write the story, though. I had planned on it for Camp NaNo until I realized it wasn't going to be novel length. It doesn't hurt to have the outline sitting there for when I need it, though.

But what to do now? It doesn't help that we have barely two weeks to Camp NaNo. I wasn't going to join this year, but I'm glad I decided to leap in after all. I do have a story and it's still in the 'taking over my brain' level of development. I have four characters, a situation or two, and a couple extra-intelligent marmosets or tamarins -- not certain which yet. I know a bit about both and I have lots of pictures of some species because of my fascination with the zoo.

No, they are not more interesting than the humans. However, they are a piece I still need to work out. That and four names for the main characters.

And more of the plot.

I have a Scrivener file set up for the outline already. I just need to start writing it. I am not clear on the POVs, though. I know one of them for sure, but I'm not certain if any of the others will have a voice as well. I think I need at least one more in order to have an insider and an outsider.

And there, just thinking in those terms finally pointed me in the proper direction of what I need for a second POV. I know who it will be now, so that just opened up a huge section of the story for me.

I think I'm about ready to start the outline now.

This is a science fiction novel, in case I haven't made that clear. I've been writing far more fantasy than science fiction the last few years, so it's good to have this one draw my attention.

And what makes this a little less dangerous than any thing else right now is that this will be my June NaNo novel, so I if I stay focused on it for the next few days, I can have a good amount of the story worked out before June 1. I will have the full outline, but it may be weak in some spots. That's okay; it's fun to . I will take the time to work up the characters, outline the story and get ready to write. Two weeks may not sound like much, but since I already know this story is going to take place in my IWC (Inner Worlds Council) universe, I have a good amount of the world building background in place. I will need to place them properly on the time line is all.

Over the next couple weeks I'll be outlining Resurrection: First Flight and editing Devlin 1. Maybe I'll do a couple more short stories for the Story a Day challenge on FM, too. I was doing well there until I had to drop it for other work.

This is what I love to do, and I'm having fun. However, it's important to track what's going on and not get lost in the wilds as the new book starts to take form and take my attention away from the real world.

Or maybe that's just what I need!

So, leaping into a different reality now. . . .


B.C. Matthews said...

I really dislike being in between novel projects (actually I just blogged about it too!). Like you, I also want to jump head first into something shiny and pants it out.

Best of luck with your June NaNo!

Zette said...

Sometimes I get smart and make certain I have something set aside to keep me busy right then. I write every day and have for many years, so I'm not going to suddenly become 'uncreative' and do something useful like, you know, housecleaning.