Wednesday, December 26, 2012

determined to not write a novel or what?

the picture below is NOT to judge any differences between novelists and other authors. it did seemed appropriate though to demonstrate different approaches. and i don't know if there is a chance to switch between a hare and a tortoise. i don't even know if it is necessary to yearn for such a change.
here's the story.

the gazillion's read of my Copper Moon concluded in finding said novel a short story. an extremely looooong short story. there are no real conflicts, no real evolution of some of the characters (well, at least the main character should show some signs of development - and i don't think the mental and physical changes she present qualify as signs of major development...)
the story i wrote lacks some of the important elements of a novel. period.
but as for the reason behind?
here are my takes (and i hope to hear yours in the comments section .... )
it is either
1. the result of my previous experiences with writing.
you know, i am a free-lance journalist. i mostly write on agriculture-related subjects like how to deal with rodents in your house, how to build up a glass house and what are the most important gardening activities of a month and the like. i translate scientific papers. it's all neat and dry and i have no problems with that.
but a garden pond has no character development and the species composition of arthropod assemblages of potato fields show no conflicts either.
it is all description.
and as for literature? some of you might have read some of my pieces.
it's short prose at its best, but mainly flash fiction and poetry.
these are reflections of a state.
no development. nothing long-ish that starts somewhere and goes to a definite direction.
flash fiction is okay, because that reveals a status quo.
but composing a decent short story had gave me hard times and i did not excel at all.
so, reason number one: lack of experience.

potential reason number 2.
my status. my own character.
what if some people are just not 'natural born novelists'?
what if a person's certain psychological factors determine one's affection towards a certain type of writing?
say, a person who loves life, indulges in many activities, lives whole heartedly tends to write romantic stories with lots of actions?
say, someone else, who tends to analyze people around him favours to write psychological stories instead, with less of real actions but more beneath the surface?
what if a natural conflict avoider just can not bring his characters into a real conflict?
someone who is content with contemplating the events of life without interruption just finds content in describing status quos?

if the latter is the case, it is not my characters who are in trouble.
i am :)
as for the time being i read, and read, and read :)
photo credits:

Saturday, December 1, 2012

the pack is diverging

i started to read my novel again, but stopped at about page 5.
i kind of tried to read it with the eye of someone completely fresh to the story.
isn't it frightening that it took me two years to get the necessary distance?
i'm kind of okay with that - as long as it helps me, though.
this time i found that the pack is quite a diverse one.
it was not a brand new experience, though. i kind of knew it right from the beginning.
let me explain the simile.
in my novel, there are parts, sections or paragraphs that are filled with actions. the characters move forwards, confront each other, try to explore something.
there are other parts where they ponder about their lives and relationships and some other parts that are descriptions. sure the descriptions are there to underline a feeling, or make the reader anticipate an action and so on...
but then again, some, if not most, of these descriptions are just tapestry. decoration. almost poetry, if you like. and not tightly needed in the course of actions. these descriptions are valueable. i like them dearly. most of them are palpable, full with emotions and all that stuff we love in emotional poetry.
not the cheesy kind, mind me. not in my novel, or any of my writing.
so, back to the 'pack'. i fancy my novel a pack of wolves. (my main character is a werewolf, btw, a really good one at that, with lots of social awareness. she only kills 'bad' people.:)
there are individuals, but they all have to behave as one, as a pack.
and as far as i see now, my individual wolves are not acting as one.
they diverge.
see what makes me sad about my novel?
i'm thinking about splitting the pack.
with lots of considerate writing, i'd have a crime-story like novel with less emphasis on the description and more on the investigation and action.
and as for all that poetry-like stuff?
i fancy of saving them for other times.
any suggestions?
the photo above was taken from this website.

Friday, September 7, 2012

in the distance 2

where i stand today, i see the mistakes, or most of them, of Copper Moon - and also the merits, if any, of the novel.
from where i stand, it is not easy to see the merits, but there surely are some.
you know, the time spent between today and the novel's writing has grown large enough.
i see Copper Moon as a writing.
it kind of hurts.
having taken part in a writers' course in March-April 2012, and having been part of a writers' supportive community eversince, i have been given lots of great insights and useful advices, either directly or indirectly.
but all these information made me weaker. i can no longer step up, raise my head and pronounce in a clear and definite voice that yes i am a writer.
i am just someone who used to write.
these days i just can not write.
i know so many rules yet i know i don't know much at all.
i felt much better when i used to write just by instinct.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

in the distance

I often listened to Mariza, sometimes the same song on and on again, while writing Copper Moon.
I am now fairly familiar with some of the main features that made the writing inappropriate for publishing.
Some writers are able to look at their own writing as someone else's, from a distance, but for me, creating this well-wanted distance took about one and a half years.
I know see that at some particular parts of the novel, my words simply do not, or not completely convey the background, the meaning I intended to say.
Sometimes main points and reasons are missing.
I mean, I make little of these explanations avaiable for the reader.
Yet some readers do prefer obscure writing and like to discover the story on their own.
Strangely enough, some of the actions in the story have the opposite mistake. They are described to the most minute detail, leaving not really much to imagination.
Now I see all those mistakes.
Are those really mistakes?
I do not consider myself broken, although the music now makes me sad.
At the same time it makes me proud of what I accomplished with having written Copper Moon.
It may take a while to polish to let it shine.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

uhm, bad news :(

the second editor did not find my copper moon worthy enough for an e-book.
i asked for a detailed explanation.
i tried not to make a drama out of it, but asked, very politely, for an explanation that may help me working towards being a better writer.
the only answer i got so far that the novel had a bad dramaturgy. oh, the irony. they must be right for i am sort of unfamiliar with the meaning of dramaturgy.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

writing course

the large publishing house, the one that had the novel contest is starting a virtual writers' course. the curiculum is tailored to each and every writer's needs. 
there will be tasks and lectures on various aspects of writing.
the bottom line? is that the course sounded great, but due to the high fee, was out of my reach.
and just guess what happened today?
three writers who took part in the novel contest were selected to enter the course free of any charge.
guess what, i am one of them.
i can't tell you just how excited i am.
i will surely let you know about some details as the course commences.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

some more info

ahem, i am better informed as of now :)
Copper Moon was found good by one of the two editors (that is one positive reaction) and has not yet been seen by the publishing house main editor (sorry for not being familiar with the English terms, but i think you get the meaning :)
the story now will get read by the second editor.
if s/he accepts it, my novel goes to the main editor.
if s/h finds it good, too - the novel will be published as an e-book.
and the main editor might find it good enough for paper.
publishing on paper is expensive, more expensive than on e-material, anyone can see that, but i've been told that if the first (electronic) story does well, my second story might get easily published on paper.
so this is where we are now.
more news on that by the end of this month.
i find the option about the 'second novel' a bit funny, and out-of-reach, because i don't just write a novel on order and i don't write it easily ... :))

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

another good news

next friday, the writers' group i attend will hold a meeting with one of the editors, who accepted my story. of course, the reason for asking her to attend our regular meeting is not my story :)
she will be here to give a short lecture about editors, about what editors expect from authors, about the inevitable cooperation between editor and author and so on.
on a side note, my copper moon will be acknowledged for having been selected for an e-book edition as well.

Monday, February 6, 2012

howl along with me :)

for i am excited.
at the end of the second round the editors UPDATE: one of the editors chose my writing to get published as an e-book.
i know next to nothing about e-books.
i don't know if this ruins/lessens/alters the chances of getting it printed in a traditional book.
for when it comes to e-material, i for example, don't spend a penny.
ahem, i know, it is quite a debated issue, so let's not talk about it :)))

i am EXCITED, excited and excited a bit more, and i howl for two reasons:
it is full moon
full moon has a definite key position in my story. if it was of any doubt for any of you, my Margaret is a werewolf :)))

being excited is one thing, and i am still to hear your similar stories. share any of your strange reactions when your first/second short story/novel/thing was accepted/published.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

the second round

now my story is in the second round. it is currently being revised by an editor, but at the same time, the second chapter is now public for readers, practically to anyone. within a couple of days i get to know whether my writing gets to the third round. if it gets a negative response from one editor, it is over. if it gets a positive reaction, it goes to the second editor. this is how the selection works in this competition.
- - 
one of the readers commented. he said that the first chapter was disappointing to the point of being unreadble for him, but this second chapter was something completely different. he quoted some of my lines saying how much he liked them... go figure :))) 
- -
another reader, a woman said she found my sentences two short, and was expecting something interesting to happen. but that never did. i agreed with her: the length of the sentences are in reverse order with the intensity of the story. if you write in long, winding sentences, your story slows down. short sentences suggest intense action. well, i had short sentences, but nothing intense happened. i agree, this might disappoint the reader.
- -
the third reader, another woman disliked the characters and did not found enough motive for their behaviour. she liked that the reader is introduced into the mind of Nancy, but i think she was expecting some action instead. there was a metaphore which she did not noticed for example and found it confusing. at the same time she was right saying that some explanations are necessary for the readers' involvement. - -