Worlds & Time

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Slow Starter

My little brother's jeep takes forever to start. You have to start it, and then it'll fail to turn over, so you let it sit a moment, and then do it again, and it will actually start then.

My writing is the same way.

The beginning of my book has always terrified me. I've started it maybe six times now, and all of them have sucked.

Once you get into it, people seem interested. Mike and Jeff can tell you about that. The world is there. The thought is there. However, I can't come up with a way to start the book off with explosive interesting action.

It's not like there isn't any action in the book. The end of the first chapter is pretty nice, actually, with blood and body counts, and heroism.

There's also a good ending. Perhaps it's a little more unrealistic, but I like it. It really allows me to show off the talents of one of my characters. The right people loose, and the wrong people semi-triumph.

But there's no hook. When I wrote the 3rd full draft of this, that was actually part of twist for me. It starts off in a normal world, and things progressively get stranger and stranger, and then suddenly one of the characters steps over a line in the sand and things are in a completely different world. I can't think of another way to do this book, and book two doesn't exist without book one.

The problem is, that makes a pathetic hook. Yeah, I got the hook contest results back (after all of that waiting I was in the very last section of hooks posted).

I agree with my reviewer, but she didn't give me anything to think about that I haven't already been wrestling with. Yes, I know that it seems safe because it's supposed to start in a safe place. Yes, I know that superheros are exciting. Thanks for that brilliant bit of wisdom. Yes, I know that I'm looking for something that the agent/publisher hasn't seen before. No, focusing on Sara or Randall doesn't seem to work because the conflict is with the people without powers in this book. I was already trying to think of a new way to do "superhero oppression," so that's not helpful.

I really only got two things: My female character isn't sympathetic and PTSD is a letdown.

I just want to scream at the screen. Yeah, I know that people don't have to like my hook, but I don't know what to do. Apparently I need to make Sara a nympho necromancer and Randall into Santa Claus. Then maybe I could get some notice.

My story is the story. It hurts because I love it. I've already had to change it so many times to make it into what I wanted, and now that it is getting to that point I know that it won't ever go anywhere. So now I'm facing changing it again and this time I've finally run out of ideas.

It's been nine years since I finished the high school edition of this. And there are more characters in this universe that live in my head than any other. So many people relying on me, and I let them down.

Aside from the real world: It's nice to be back at work incidentally, although my neck is exhausted. I dunno how I'm going to pull four days of this in a row. My trip home today was horrific though. I was in a hurry, and I hit traffic and then I had problems with the gas pump, and then forgot to buy what I promised I would go shopping for.

And then there's all that fun bad news about the hook contest. Yay.

If I have to do hotel work for the rest of my life though. I don't know if I can deal with that.

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1 Comments:

  • I think you should go back and re-read your critique with a more open mind. I can understand your frustration, but I do think there's some constructive recommendations there. I've never read your story, but I can understand the lack of interest in Sara -- based on the hook, why should we care? Really, truly look at that objectively.

    I'm sorry if I sound bitter. I was just condemned to bed rest.

    Any tips to deal with the boredom?

    By Blogger Brigid, at 10:23 AM  

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