I Broke My On/Off Switch

It’s been a slightly brain-busting last few days, and I am definitely going to blame Tavis for this.  He can take it, trust me. In fact, after the things I’ve now done to him, this little bit of blame is very, very small change. To be honest, I think the problem is that my on/off switch seems to be broken in the on position for writing.  I swear, I’d be annoyed about it if I didn’t enjoy writing so much. No, I’m not going to call anyone to fix that.  Ever.

So, the big news today is that the latest round of edits on Bound, which was largely about incorporating feedback from my test readers, is finished.  After 4 days.  Even I’m a little shocked about that, especially given that there were whole scenes that were rewritten, or reworked.  Some of them I just opened a fresh document and started from scratch, as it would have been impossible to rework what was there, pasting in the new text when I was done.  I added about 5k to the book while I was doing this, which is somewhat frightening, though not surprising.  It’s back in the drawer now and will be for at least a week.  Then I’m going to take another run through it, see how I feel about it and, if it’s ready, print it out for my two test readers.  I’m kind of thinking I might add one more this round, but I haven’t made any decisions, so don’t anyone get excited. 🙂

So, what am I going to do with myself now? I mean, I’ve gotten my two big pre-trip goals done, and it’s still 16 days before I leave.  Well, I think I’m going to start another pass through Possession.  Who knows, crazier things have happened than me getting that done in time for my trip too.  That I’m definitely not making any promises on though, so my test readers can keep a lid on their hopes.  I do love their enthusiasm for more, I won’t lie.  It’s a nice thing, and kicks me in the pants to keep going, keep pushing, to continue to make them want more.  I know their taste in books, so when they say they can’t wait for the next, I take it as high praise indeed.

In the meantime, I’m also trying to slide as far back into the world of Necromantic as I dare while I’m still editing the Mirrors of Bershan trilogy, but it’s been a little rough.  My brain keeps wanting to think just about Mirrors, all three books, but I’ll bring it around.  I think it’s largely that I still feel a burning need to make Mirrors as good as it can be, and I’m already aware of how certain it is that I’ll let myself get entirely lost in Necromantic.  There’s a lot going on there, and some of it is fascinating, to me at least.  A few parts of my notes have me sitting there asking myself if I really thought of that.  It’s kind of a cool feeling.  I’m not used to being impressed with myself.  I think that I’ll be able to sit down and spend some quality time with Necromantic after the edits are done for Possession and Bound at least is back to the test readers.  It won’t be time yet to take The Nine out, in all likelihood, so I’ll need to pass a few weeks or so somehow, and that seems like a good way to do it.  Also, it will probably be a good way to gain some distance.

I’m not waiting for that entirely though.  I’ve been nudging myself down the path to Necromantic lately by starting to build the playlist for that trilogy.  It’s something that I did with Mirrors, and I found it helped.  I just wander around my mp3 collection (which is relatively vast by my own estimate) and listen for songs that express a mood or theme or relationship that I’m going for in the book.  It usually helps draw me into that place from which writing the story is easy.  I often edit with the Mirrors one playing in the background. The one for Necromantic is well on it’s way, but I don’t know when it might be finished.  Honestly, the one for Mirrors wasn’t totally done, as in no more additions, until about halfway through The Nine.

I think I’m going to sit down and make myself a general road map for the overall story arc of Necromantic and the major events in each book.  I know how much it helped once I had that for Mirrors, so I’ll go with what has worked.  I suspect that doing so will also help draw me in, bring me back to the point where Devan can whisper in my ear. I know he has more secrets to tell.  I can feel it. If I can just coax them out of him, we’ll be well on our way.  A lot about the world is already built so now it’s a matter of discovering the storyline itself, but I’ll get there.

And, finally, the picture of the evening. This was, if I remember right, is from my trip to Vancouver Island last year.


About Julie

I'm a writer and photographer. I always have something with me to take notes for ideas or writing projects I'm thinking about or have on the go. I also like to go around with my camera and take pictures of anything that strikes me as beautiful or evocative. I'm perpetually working on one story or another, while waiting for enough distance to judge the last one (or more). I'm always working on several projects at once, developing the next book, even as I'm editing the last. Beyond that, there's always plenty of scraps and twists of ideas rolling around in my head, eventually turning themselves into full blown stories.
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4 Responses to I Broke My On/Off Switch

  1. jmmcdowell says:

    Much better for that writing switch to be stuck in the “on” position! I’m working on my own beta-read revisions and trying to sort out character relationships and the possible new scenes to replace ones that aren’t working. Lots of ideas running around right now!

    • Julie says:

      Excellent. Glad to hear your creative juices are flowing well, and I very much look forward to hearing about your progress.

      And you’re right. That’s why I’m not sending for the repair guy. I like the broken switch just fine 😀

  2. Celtic Forest Dweller says:

    “I’m not used to being impressed with myself” you say? WHAT. O_O Well you SHOULD be . . .

    That’s the answer — your writing switch is stuck on “on”! This makes so much sense. I’m afraid mine might be stuck on “off” . . .

    Also, good luck on putting off writing Necromantic. I’m kinda doubting you’ll be able to 😀

    • Julie says:

      I have to tell you, I’ve never been good at that whole self-image thing. Oh well. I’m getting better. At least I’ll admit that maybe I should be now. Trust me, that’s a step in the right direction.

      As for Necromantic, Devan’s finally started whispering again 🙂 But actual draft will have to wait until there’s an outline completed. That’s my rule and the characters are all stuck with it.

      Regarding your own on/off switch, I doubt it’s permanently stuck in off. Maybe you just need to switch something up. Work on a different project, try a different method/genre/whatever. Or just set yourself a reasonable goal and stick with it. It’ll come around, I’m sure of it.

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