taste_is_sweet: (Every Five Pages)
I finished my new novel yesterday. I put in the last edits, made sure the title page had the right info on it, and sent that sucker off. Hopefully to engender a six-figure bidding war between famous publishers before it gets snapped up by Joss Whedon.

My immediate future. Of course.
 photo Money.jpg

So, with the work finished and my wealth and fortune completely assured, you'd think that I'd be happy, wouldn't you? Well, so would I! Except for how I'm not.

Nope. Pretty much everything made me cry this morning. Nothing like trying to sing along to your MP3 player and getting choked up by songs that have nothing to do with your life.

The sad (sadder?) thing is, I know it's because the novel's finished. This has happened to me before. What should be an occasion for enthusiastic relief, or at least relief and alcohol, instead ends up giving me the blues for days. Because obviously, if I'm not working on something then I'm a useless human being, right? Not to mention that once the novel's been sent out into the big, bad world, there's a huge, enormous chance that no one will like it. And if no one likes my writing, then I'm a useless human being.

Wash, rinse, repeat ad nauseam.

So here I am, moping 'cause I've got something accomplished. Go, me. And now I get to add terror to misery by starting something else that maybe no one will like either.

Writing: It's not a job, it's a (completely self-imposed) torment! And yet I keep doing it anyway.

Isn't one of the definitions of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result?

 photo Chimp.jpg

Um, yay?

29/3/12 15:52
taste_is_sweet: (Miserably Ever After)
Took me two days to, essentially, add less than a full paragraph worth of words to a scene in the novel I'm editing.

I'm on page 66. Just thought I'd mention that.

taste_is_sweet: (Miserably Ever After)
So. My first-ever finished novel: the one I started back in 1997 or '98; the one I kind of abandoned for five years and then finished in June (July?) of the year my son was born because I didn't want to have to tell him I'd never managed it; the one that got me an agent and then never got a publisher; the one I spent nearly two years waiting for Edge and Tesseract Books to finally reject and the one I recently decided I would edit--again--so I could self-publish it and maybe, actually, possibly, make some money with and hopefully get my name out there. Yeah, Dauntless. That one.

Well, I did indeed start editing it (again) this week, and it turns out it actually sucks.

Yep. There is suckage. It's slow (I knew it was slow; didn't think it was this slow), kind of histrionic in places, has too many characters, too much plot, too many dead ends and internal logic that's only logical if by 'logical' you mean, 'ridiculous'. I feel like I should apologize to everyone I've ever sent it to. ([livejournal.com profile] wpadmirer, you are a better friend than I knew.) Obviously when my agent said a big part of the reason he took me on was my willingness to accept suggestions, he really wasn't kidding. It sure as hell wasn't the book.

Naturally this is kind of disappointing, though sadly not as much of a surprise as I would've hoped. I spent a long time--too long; way, way too long--on this fucking thing and put a lot of effort into it (though not in the right places, apparently), and I like the characters and at least some of the ideas. So to have it come to nothing is pretty sad. I suppose it shows how much I've improved as a writer since my late 20s, but I was hoping the difference wouldn't be quite this dramatic, you know?

I could salvage it by losing at least eight characters and basically rewriting everything else, but maybe it's just time to give it up as a bad job and set it aside once and for all. I have plenty of other ideas, and now I even know how to write an outline.

I haven't erased the novel, though. I'm not quite ready to do that. Maybe one day I'll be known enough as an author that it'll be publishable. Or maybe years from now I'll open the file again and have a good laugh, or cry, or just smile and finally put it in the recycle folder. Or maybe I'll print it out; we could always use more scrap.
taste_is_sweet: (Miserably Ever After)
You know you've had a sucky writing day when...

1) Even before you open the document on your computer, you realize that you're going to have to research something you thought up until that second that you already knew.

2) After spending most of the day on research instead of writing, you find out that in order to make the novel remotely plausible you a) actually need to move the hero to a different location and b) actually need to set the entire novel in a different year.

3) While going back over the novel to correct the place and time, you discover that you've unintentionally stricken the hero with cognitive dissonance of epic and ridiculous proportions. This, of course, is not the problem you want the character to have. And naturally, fixing it requires going back through three chapters, then eight more to make sure you haven't missed anything.

4) And then you can finally get to work, in the last half-hour of the day before you have to stop writing to start dinner and fetch the kid, only to realize that now you can't remember exactly what you planed to add next anymore. Not that you have time.

taste_is_sweet: (Vague)
What the hell is it with me and commas? Seriously, it's like I'm personally responsible for the health and well-being of the damn things. If I'm not paying attention I start spraying them all over whatever I'm writing with very little logic and almost no sense that I can think of. Seriously, at least half the time I don't even put them where I'd actually take a breath if I was reading the sentence out loud. And yet, there they are.

I thought I'd gotten over this little...problem about three years or so ago around the same time I stopped (mostly) repeating stuff for emphasis. But I just re-read something that I posted just a few months ago, and there they are again: Commas. Too many of them. Either I somehow didn't think they needed removal the first time around, or they bred in my WIP folder while I wasn't looking. Maybe I need the digital equivalent of AMDRO.

Or maybe, just maybe, I need to pay more attention, when I write.
taste_is_sweet: (On a Daily Basis)
I can't remember whether one of my protagonists lost his right or left kidney. Oops.

Also: AAAAAARRRRRRRRRGH. And, ::facepalm::
taste_is_sweet: (Vague)
I use the word 'almost' almost a million times in three hundred pages. I swear. Everything is 'almost'. 'Almost painfully'; 'almost laughed'; 'almost screamed'. Almost, almost, almost. Except when I use 'nearly'.

Jesus Christ. It's like I can't commit to anything. It's almost enough to make me want to cry. Nearly.

Okay, back to editing. Only 94 pages to go! Almost!
taste_is_sweet: (On a Daily Basis)
Very good thing: two people whom I haven't spoken to in regrettably ages but whom I like very, very much were kind enough to friend this journal. Thank you. :)

Funny thing: hammered her feet like hammers seems to be becoming an in-joke for the ages. I've decided to be pleased about this.

Bad thing: Another one of my FList left some thoughtful commentary/critique stuff on my most recent [livejournal.com profile] brigits_flame entry, which I found last night, skimmed, and then lost all courage to actually read. I haven't read it yet.

And unfortunately for me--probably because I got another rejection for my novel the same afternoon I was writing the damn entry--where I was merely scared to write anything, now I'm kind of paralyzed with terror and misery.

I have no idea what to work on today. Pape and Danforth? Gills? At the moment I'm feeling like they both suck equally.

I know, I need to get over myself. People love what I write, etc. etc. But today it is especially difficult. Maybe I just need more coffee.

Okay, I'm going to read the critique now.
taste_is_sweet: (On a Daily Basis)
kh'Wen screamed in anger and pain, then hammered her feet like hammers into u'Taita's belly.

::facepalm:: You have no idea how many freaking times I've been over this scene. No idea.

Hammered her feet like hammers. Now that's some talent! Yee-hah!

::slinks off in shame::


taste_is_sweet: (Default)

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