Hey, we had some sun yesterday; it was great! After all that rain it was lovely to see some blue skies and actually enjoy being outdoors. Not that I did much of that; Sunday is my training day with the Dolly Rockit Rollers and we train on an indoor rink. Ho hum.
Sorry this took so long coming. Raven did her post almost two weeks ago now, but I got distracted by other things. I’m good at that. Anyway, thanks Tom for tagging us; I hope the results have been interesting.
For those of you who missed Raven’s post, this is a blog hop designed to share our writing process around our current WIP. What works, what doesn’t, how we find the little spark that keeps us writing, how we deal with slow days. I’m hoping to tackle all these things in today’s hop, so I hope you’re ready for it. 🙂 Goodie.Do you like my new line break, by the way? The HTML versions suck, so I’ll be using this one from now on. Purdy, huh? Click it to see where I got it. ^_^
What Am I Working On?
Walking The Razor’s Edge (WTRE). This is the second novel in the Saar’s Legacy trilogy, the first of which (Silk Over Razor Blades – SORB) is currently with beta readers. I’m hoping to have reader comments back by June 15, but, in the meantime, starting the next thing was the best way I could think of to avoid going crazy with nerves. Because I am bloody nervous.
The Saar’s Legacy trilogy follows Ileandra Young (yes, yes, I know, I will be changing her name following this post, I just haven’t found one that suits yet) and her eventual rise from newborn vampire, afraid of everything, to heavy-weight mover and shaker in the vampire community.
SORB sees her become a vampire and deal with the fallout of what that means to her friendships and relationship with her fiancé, as well as for herself on a personal level. WTRE follows directly on from that first story and sees Ileandra forced to take a more active role in vampire society, managing their expectations of what they want from her as well as what she wants from herself.
How Does My Work Differ From Others of Its Genre?
I want to say ‘strong female character’ but that’s just not true. 1) Plenty of books in the genre now have strong female leads and 2) Ileandra doesn’t start that way. She spends most of SORB whining about how miserable her life is and, by the time she gets to WTRE, though she understands a little more, she’s still overwhelmed and confused.
No, WTRE and the rest of the trilogy is different, mainly because of my take on vampires.
I don’t think it’s too much of a spoiler to tell you; vampires in the Saar’s Legacy trilogy are the product of a pact with the Egyptian god of chaos and nastiness, Set. He gives them life, strength and vitality and in return vampires give him blood tributes. They do this by drinking blood. My vampires take their root in Ptolemaic Egypt and their origin ties in directly with the Battle of Alexandria in which Octavian, Antony and Cleopatra played significant roles. Yes, I’ve taken a little artistic license with the facts of the battle and the relationships between these three people, but, by and large, the history is accurate and my vampires slot in.
My work is also different because its, what I like to call, an in-between story. Many other books of the genre I’ve read, vampires are either known and established in the world as bad guys or good guys. They’re recognised as legitimate dangers, or members of society depending on what books you read. Or vampires are underground and hidden. My story happens between those two; at the start of the trilogy, vampires are a myth or fable not to be believed, by the end of it, the world is forced to acknowledge that these creatures are real and that they need to be dealt with.
There… I don’t think that’s too much of a spoiler. ^_^
Why Do I Write What I Write?
I want to read it. Simple as that. When this trilogy started out, it was a six part monster of shitty writing, in which all the adventures I hoped for as a teenager took place. Now, as a thirty year old, I have a bit more control of my ideas and I’ve spread them out a little, but these are still adventures I want (not literally, obviously). These are still people I want to meet, relationships I want to have.
I’m a writer. I write fiction. I’m one of those most fortunate few who are able to have anything in the world they want… so long as they are willing to write about it.
That’s the main reason.
The other reason is that, when I started, I didn’t see anything like this out in the world. It bugged me. I wanted to share my idea of vampires and their origins because what I’d read to that point hadn’t been satisfactory.
Then Twilight came out. -_-
*shrugs* So yeah… I won’t deny it; on some level this trilogy has become a big nyah-nyah-na-nyah-nyah at Stephanie Meyer (and my 15 year old self who wrote the same sorts of crap). But it’s also just me flexing some imaginary muscle; letting off some steam.
How Does Your Writing Process Work?
With this piece, far more like Raven’s. However, in an effort to avoid repeating her words, I’ll tell you how I used to do it (and how I still do it on a mini level).
I have an idea. A germ. A seed. I don’t write it down in a notebook or record it in a sound file… oooooh no. I sit at my computer, crack open a new project in Scrivener (or in the past, Word) and write. Just… write. I don’t know where I’m going, or how I’m going to get there, only that it’s FREAKIN AWESOME and that I love the journey.
Occasionally I have an idea of the end, or where I want to be. Normally by the time I’m 10k words in I know where I want to finish, but the rest of the route is still unknown.
It’s a bitch to edit later (which is why SORB took so long before I did the rewrite back in November) but that first draft is just… brain vomit. I think it, it goes down, warts and all and I just let my fingers fly on the keys.
Those first drafts are riddled with typos, incomplete sentences, chapters that start in the middle or hang off in the middle of nowhere. They often have massive duplicated sections and then two different versions until they meet up again somewhere in the middle… it’s just a mess.
Then I leave it. I leave it and cry in a corner 1) in relief for getting so many words out of me and purging those demons and 2) because I know eventually I’ll have to fix it.
Then my process looks a lot like Raven’s. I skim read, I fine read, I edit, I re-read. I edit some more. As many times as it takes. Often more than Raven’s stuff because it’s longer and because it was such a mess to start off which.
But I think I have slightly more fun than Raven does. Da Shared Brain gives me a hell of a lot more freedom than she gives Raven. Not sure why. Maybe it will change. For now, however, I just enjoy the ride.
Phew! Ha, that was fun. Okay, done for now. In the same way Raven did, I’d like one person to continue the hop. This time it’s Brian Taylor over at Descent into Slushland. No pressure hon, but if you do fancy taking part, just link back here to let me know. Cheers!Okay. Sorted. Goals now….
Edit my flash fiction piece
Hmm. Yeah, that’s a bit embarrassing. Nope.
Resubmit my sci-fi story Love Bytes to another competition.
Nope. *head desk*
Continue working on WTRE, but only AFTER the other goals have been achieved
Kinda… in that I kept working, but well before the other goals. In that I just completely forgot about them. *sigh* This is what happens when I start a new project. I just dive on board so hard that everything else gets left behind.
In light of this and my upcoming operation, I think I need to change tack.
Maybe I just need to accept that I’m still too excited to concentrate on anything else other than writing this first draft. Maybe in some of my downtime, instead of working on my LARP costume wheee!) I can do those other things. At least then it will be after my daily 2,000 words (so I don’t feel like I’m missing out or slacking off).
- Edit my flash fiction piece
- Resubmit my sci-fi story Love Bytes to another competition
- Continue working on WTRE
- Relax after my op
Yeah. There we go. That should be enough to be getting on with, right?
I know I won’t completely relax after the op; I’ll be lying in bed, still wanting to do things, so if I keep those first two jobs for those points, then at least that’s easier, right?
Heh… that’s what I’m going to tell myself anyway. 😉