Book Two News: Rewriting Becomes Writing

Posted: January 9, 2016 in Writing News
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One of the biggest issues I had with my original Darkness Falling manuscript was there were a lot of places that felt improbably or stretched too far. In my own mind I would mull over the ideas as I put them into place, trying to find answer and solutions that were simplified merely so that I could jump forward to the next part in the story.

I’ve come to realize this has a lot to do with a combination of lacking in life experience and impatience. I didn’t see what was really possible for the narration of the book and instead wanted to hurry to get to the big reveals.

Another big change is that I used to write stories and put characters into them. Now I realize that characters are the story. They are what drive it and make it feel alive, rather then being generic people who just happen to be there when events occur.

As I’ve said before, Book One was far easier to put together. I think that’s because back then, the climactic event of the story was my big idea. Once I had that figured out, I never took the time I really needed to figure out the rest. During my rewrite I really started finding my characters as people and questioning their motives, making them the focus rather than the scene itself.

Multiple characters were cut for being unnecessary. May they rest in peace.

This time, I already have a good sense of my core characters and instead am see where the true story lies. It’s not about rushing through this scene just to get to the next. Instead, I’m facing the realities of the conflicts my characters were given and how they might resolve them. My editing has become a full on slash and burn, leaving only rudimentary pieces of my original ideas to build upon.

The result is a richer, more realistic story driven by characters alive in a world they seek to save or destroy. It also means full on writing rather than rewriting. I’m not editing scenes, I’m building them from the ground up. Although I hadn’t worked with Darkness Falling for years, I still always let it roll through my mind, questioning certain things. It feels good to finally resolve t hose things.

Thank you for reading.  Have you ever gone back to a story and had to slash and burn? Let me know!

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Comments
  1. amcmulin914 says:

    Slash and burn and then like harvest the remains and resurrect them in a whole other tale, that’s the type of Frankenstein like techniques I have discovered. I think you shared some keen insight here, about experience and maturity effecting (is it affecting I never know?) the quality of your storytelling. I struggle with the same thing. This anxiety is worsened when you study the lives of some famous writers Hemingway, Twain, or whatever. I think the great things is some great writers probably have very little experience too, I think in of shut in like Emily Dickens, or Pynchon, so all hope is not lost. Either way the sentiment is spot on, good stories need maturity. We got to get out and find it. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • rrwillica says:

      The thing I’ve learned is that you never stop growing as a writer. In another ten years I’ll probably look back at these books and think “I was so young and silly then, thinking I knew what I was doing.” That’s why I feel like taking this journey to the end with these books is so important. I can see where I was and where I am now, but also know it’s not the end of the road and will continue to change.

      Liked by 1 person

      • amcmulin914 says:

        That’s it. Writing becomes this really great tool for personal development. But it’s sort of a magical self development because it takes place through this other thing of a language/story. I think this is the real power of writing, why so many people get into it.

        Liked by 1 person

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