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One-Novel Wonder

December 27, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

I feel all washed up as a writer. (I’m trying to stick to my 300 words a day minimum imposed by Anne Lamott from Bird by Bird, so I may ramble a bit.)

Why do I think I’m all washed up? Because I wrote one novel, and I can’t seem to write any others except for this effed-up teen series I’ve been working on for the past couple of years. Sure, I can almost always pump out 50,000 words every November, but that’s only when the story has to do with my teen novels or characters in some way. And trust me, they are poop in the same way that Fifty Shades of Grey is.

Hmm… maybe that means it’ll sell at least.

I’d like to write something original like my first finished novel (revised and edited). My finished novel has been in the works for the past five years. And if that won’t sell, but an agent likes my writing style, I have nothing of serious consequence to offer other than total garbage.

I have ideas—tons of them—that I just can’t seem to capitalize upon. A drama about budget cuts in the library (boring), four wealthy women whose lives radically change (book club material), an interracial couple that falls in love during the 1960s (historical romance). I read a ton of books so I should be pregnant with ideas, right? But somehow, I am barren in the brain and the womb.

I don’t mean to sound defeatist… well, in fact, I do. I feel defeated. I feel about as hopeless about giving birth to a new novel as I do about giving birth to a child. I am currently infertile in more ways than one.

Francine Pascal is my inspiration for writing, if that tells you anything. Perhaps it would do me some good to reread some Sweet Valley and remind myself why I liked the series so much. (Or why I find it to be a poor excuse for literature in retrospect.)

 

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  1. December 27, 2012 at 12:09 PM

    I’m sorry to hear of your writing struggles. I hope these times you feel “all washed up” allow your next novel to cook slowly under the surface.

    • Kass
      December 27, 2012 at 2:03 PM

      Thanks! I’m working on a fantasy novel so we’ll see what happens.

  2. December 27, 2012 at 12:37 PM

    If I had a dollar for every time someone said they can’t seem to get their ideas together, I’d be a billionaire. Have you thought about a sequel to your first novel? An idea for you, and I hope it will be helpful:

    Grab one character you really love (from either your first novel or the teen series) and toss him/her into a random/wacky situation be it reallistic or fantastical. Get into the comfortable (or stylishly uncomfortable) shoes of your character and decide how he/she would react, and you have yourself the beginning (or middle) of a sequel!

    Happy writing!

    -AM

    • Kass
      December 27, 2012 at 2:03 PM

      Thank you! That sounds like a great idea!

      • December 28, 2012 at 4:30 PM

        Glad I could help. I know I’ve had writers’ block more times than I care to count and wished I had someone to give me ideas.

  3. December 27, 2012 at 1:00 PM

    Maybe you should give your teen novels a chance. As a rule, YA fiction isn’t the most brilliant literature out there, but it still does have its merits. Polish up your teen series, self-publish it, and see the reaction. It may not be what you *want* to write right now, but if that’s what you keep writing … well, there has to be a reason, right? It wouldn’t be the end of the world to write the next Fifty Shades, would it? I know my bank account certainly wouldn’t protest it.

    • Kass
      December 27, 2012 at 2:07 PM

      Good points. Thanks!

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