Saturday, March 7, 2009

Amazing Writing Days and Being Completely Wrong...

Well, writing today was completely awesome! I had so much fun writing up this chapter today. Well, technically, the chapter isn’t done, but the big parts are all written. I just have to finish up the last few paragraphs, all nice and neat, and lead the characters into the next chapter. Then it will be done.

This scene was fun because one of the characters took me completely by surprise. I had always figured that Casey’s ex would be a bit more of a pushover in this scene. The type of guy who just can’t stay mad at people, no matter what they’ve done to him- you know the type, right? Well, that’s how I had this guy outlined. That deep down he knew that he should be mad at her, but just couldn’t bring himself to do it.

Boy was I wrong!

I started writing the scene and couldn’t help but notice how snippy he was being, he was dang near rude at times. To be fair, Casey does deserve to be treated this way, but still… wow! It felt so amazing to write his emotional transformation from Casey’s point of view. While I know what he’s thinking during the scene, the reader only gets to interpret what Casey notices which makes this scene, no this entire book, that much more fun to write!

It was really amazing to see this side of him, I think that it makes the entire scene, and his character in general, a lot more believable. With their history, it’d be expected that there would be some awkwardness and residual anger popping up all over the place now that fate has brought them back together – yet another sign that fate and irony are truly out to get Casey.

It can be difficult at times for me to process their past, especially when I’m bombarded with both of their feelings on a topic at once. I can see and feel exactly what each of them are going through the entire time. While I would completely understand if the guy chooses to never talk to Casey again, I also really understand why Casey did what she did. Just thinking about it all now is making my head spin...

I really can’t wait to finish up this chapter and maybe start working on layering in some of the scenes with guy #2. This guy has become another one of my favorite characters because he is so obvious with his intentions towards Casey, but she’s completely oblivious. You all know that type of girl, right? Everyone knows that a guy is flirting with her and she still denies it, saying that they’re “just friends” or that everyone is seeing things. Casey is so that girl and that makes it so much fun to write her. My beta reader, M, seems to really like how I’ve written some scenes dealing with this. Casey sees everything happening, so the reader does to, but this is where the similarities end. While the reader uses common sense and knows what’s really happening, Casey remains oblivious. I can remember one interesting Gmail chat where M said that she wanted to just reach in and slap Casey to knock some sense into her.

I’m torn on whether or not this response is a good thing though. Yes, it means that the reader is really involved in the story and connecting with my protagonist… but on the other hand, would this “pull readers out of the story” too much? I love writing Casey this way and think that it works fairly well, but I don’t want to ruin the story for people. But then again, the story really doesn’t work as well any other way. It’s so much fun to slip in clues here and there and have Casey see them as normal. I can’t wait to see people’s reactions to the end of the book when the villain is revealed. All of the important clues are right there in the preceding chapters staring them in the face, but will be very easy to overlook thanks to Casey’s unique view of her world. I’m really going for that *GASP* “No… how?... but I thought… wow!” type of reaction.

I love how this whole writing style works with the premise of the book as well. “Two men vying for Casey Parker’s heart. One becomes the man of her dreams, the other something out of her worst nightmares.” It’s such a fun love triangle to write because I get to make the reader root for both the hero and the villain before their actual roles are ever revealed. They’ll get to see the good and the bad parts of each and yet the last several chapters will still leave them shocked and kicking themselves for not seeing it sooner. The rough draft of these last chapters are complete and parts of them still give me chills to remember. I hope that readers have a similar experience.

The hard part about the ending for me is knowing how much I need to reveal about the villain and his motives. Instinct is designed to be the first in a four-part series, well technically it works as a trilogy, but the fourth book idea is just so much fun (and the only one not mostly from Casey’s POV). I need to reveal enough information to satisfy readers while saving other information to be released in later books. Hopefully I find a good balance.

A big problem with this is finding a good way to present the information. Right now, I have three or four chapters written from the hero’s perspective because it’s simply impossible for Casey to witness certain events. I’ve considered rewriting a few chapters of the book from the villain’s perspective, but not showing anything that is too sinister. I even have a good part of the book in mind for this. This would be a good way to help the reader connect with him and learn some of his secrets. I’ll probably make a comment about it within the manuscript as something to consider in the second draft. Or third… did we ever decide if my first draft was done a while ago and I’m writing the second now? Oh well, it’s not that important…

What is important is my need for sleep. It’s way too late and I should be in bed, but I felt the writing gremlin getting anxious about getting this blog post written, so here it is. I hope it lives up to your and his expectations. Especially his, he can be quite the little bugger when he’s irritated with me…

Well, until I blog again…
Talk 2ya later…

~Willow


Note to Self: NEVER type up a blog post in Microsoft Word and then copy/paste it as it WON'T format correctly because of embedded code from Microsoft.

4 comments:

beth said...

Yeah, don't worry about drafts. The number of drafts don't matter until it become FINAL. ...now, if only I could get to that final draft!!

Willow said...

Little by little. Day by day. I'm sure we'll both get there. Us writer-type people gotta stick together!

mand said...

Can't remember how i found you but i've been silently loitering for a while...

Coincidence! I had the same thing happen a couple of weeks ago, a character who has been very mild and reluctant to confront anyone began being openly grumpy even with people he didn't know very well. With him it was fear; turns out when he's nervous he gets tetchy. I had no idea. 80)

Btw i'm nearly 40,000 words in, somewhere in the middle of Chapter Six. The growing pains are here, which is more about my own motivation than about getting a readership, and of course to leave an archive when the fans i will have in 1213 need something extra to peruse!

Willow said...

Thanks for reading Mand! I'm the same way with so many blogs I follow. I read and enjoy them, but for some reason never get around to commenting, lol!

Wow! Maybe it's something in the air with these characters suddenly developing attitudes on us, lol. My guy is such a geeky love interest for Casey, I just couldn't imagine him holding grudges. The moodiness is surprisingly attractive on him though, hehe.

Congratulations on 40,000 words! I just hit 91,000 words the other day and feel like I'm slowing down because I'm somewhat afraid to get done. In the back of my mind I keep saying that someday (when I'm a big famous author with a huge following, of course) I can publish my blogs as the story behind my stories, lol!

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