September 27, 2022

Slipping Into The Future

Time certainly does keep passing, in that fast-slow way it has, and somehow it's late September, a moment-lifetime ago from last September. The calendar calls that a year since I first got excited about a new idea that led to me participating in NaNoWriMo again and writing a big mess of words that will form the basis of an actual novel. But surely it can't be true we're three-quarters of the way through 2022 already, because I intended to have a real draft of that novel written by now, or at least started, and instead I'm still in the planning phase.

I don't know why it remains such a surprise to me that novels take a long time. (I'm sure none of my blog readers are surprised.) In March, I was looking back on my naivete from January: "I thought I'd take care of a bit of research, sketch an outline, and be ready to start writing a new draft in a few weeks." Naturally at that point, I was still busy researching and worldbuilding. And of course I was doing the same in May, the last time I posted an update on this project.

I have not yet stopped focusing on worldbuilding, along with researching the real science behind the future world I'm creating. I've been developing the story's characters and plot as well, but every time I make progress in those areas, I realize there's more I need to understand about the details of my imagined future in order to fit the pieces together. My goal is to write scifi that will be convincing and coherent to readers, and that requires me to become an expert on the science of my fiction.

I'm incredibly eager to have the story elements settled and the plot outlined so I can begin writing. But I also don't want to write a draft that's another mess because I'm making every single decision on the fly. I've written plenty of drafts like that, and many good ideas have come from them, but so have many rounds of revision. That method takes a long time, too, so I'm trying this way with the planning time up front to see how that goes.

November is only a month away (somehow), and I may end up doing some sort of NaNoWriMo challenge to move this novel forward. I'd love to be ready to start writing by then, but if I'm not, maybe at least I'll manage not to be too surprised.

Good Stuff Out There:

→ Heather Schwedel spots a trend in the Protagonist Does a Thing formula of book titles: "In 2017, we learned that Eleanor Oliphant was completely fine. As you may recall, there was a bestselling novel all about it, titled, appropriately enough, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Soon, a wave of syntactically similar book titles followed, all involving simple sentences containing the female protagonist's name: Evvie Drake started over. Florence Adler swam forever. Eliza started a rumor. Britt-Marie was here."

No comments:

Post a Comment