You might notice a new look to my site. I decided it needed a refresher since my old parent theme wasn’t getting updates anymore and the dropdowns no longer functioned. I switched to this new one, and though I’m not sure I’m in love, it’ll do.
(EDIT: I just noticed the url is missing from the comments form, so if you wouldn’t mind putting that in the comment body until I get this fixed, I’d appreciate it. Thanks! EDIT 2: This should be fixed now.)
While I was in maintenance mode, I also changed from trying to use follow.it to mail chimp for the posts-via-email feature, so some of you might get an email from me later today. Sorry if that’s not what you wanted.
March took me by storm with spring break and birthday celebrations (I’m the big 40 now!), so I’m behind on my obligatory visits to other blogs. As I scramble to catch up, I leave you here with another installment of Insecure Writer’s Support Group!
I’m happy to report that I’m not insecure at this time. Some time ago, on the cusp of finishing my book 2 rewrites, I felt it was necessary to split the book in 2. At the time, it was the only way I thought I could relate my hero’s subplot to the main plot. Once I made that decision, however, I promptly put aside all progress and avoided doing the work.
Well, I recently hit a spot in my companion novel that isn’t working for me. Jim Butcher has some excellent writing advice, and in his discussion about scenes, he says there can be four answers to the conflict question of “will they succeed?” He says don’t answer with “yes”, because yes is boring. That’s exactly where my scene is, and I’m not sure how to change the answer to a “yes, but…” and still make it work like I need to.
Therefore, I do what I do best: put it aside and avoid it.
But the writing advice triggered my natural tendency to take what I learned and apply it to whatever situation I can, and that included book 2. As my brain organized mental notecards to lay out the events, it became glaringly obvious that splitting the book was going to undermine some of the dramatic moments I had planned. Then it came to me—a way to rework the existing subplot to and make it work. That burst of adrenaline had me running like a squirrel who discovered an extra cache of winter nuts.
After almost a year of not working on book 2, the ideas are back and the passion is strong. And the best part? I can go back to calling book 3 book 3, because it never really felt like a book 4 to me. The companion novel is getting shoved into the drawer for now, but since it takes place between books 3 and 4, it doesn’t hurt anything if I get to it later.
I will show off the companion novel’s cover, however.
I have to admit I am rather proud with how it turned out, and if you’re wondering, yes, I digitally painted it myself. I had to start over on the character four times to get her right, and that doesn’t count the background that my husband had said wasn’t good enough once I finished. It took me a month of fiddling to get it to this point, and I still see little things that make my eye twitch. Oh well. Maybe I’ll fix them when I return to writing the book.
IWSG Question of the Month – Have any of your books been made into audio books? If so, what is the main challenge in producing an audiobook?
Alas, the answer is no. I can’t afford it (my books are loooong). I do have a microphone and Audacity though, so maybe a podiobook or two exists in my future. I just have to finish writing all the books first.
Have you ever had a problem in one book inspire the solution in another? What writing advice have you found most impactful? What do you think of the companion novel’s cover?