The title for this post have you wondering what the heck I'm up to today (no comments about the spelling either). I suppose Wednesdays should be WiP Wednesdays. I'll explain why this isn't so. Monday I was going to put up a post called Monday Muse, and it was going to be a free writing exercise. Do you think my muse wanted to talk? Heck no. Tuesday was to become Tuesday Teaser, with pretty much the same intention. Suffice it to say that I have kicked the muse out of the room and I'm just going to shotgun it.
I've started book two of the Twilight series, because I promised my son I would read through them all, no matter how painful the experience. The first book was pure torture. The writing was inane, the storyline predictable, and overall it was just a terrible read. I am trying to go into book two with a positive attitude, but it's been really difficult to maintain. For those of you who love the books, you'll probably want to skip this section of the post.
For starters, the vampires are repeatedly described as cold and hard (not very well, I might add). Okay, I get that. What makes the author think I need to be reminded once more that Edward Cullen's skin is like ice, that he's a stone statue, that Bella will freeze to death if she sits next to him too long? You've made it clear that he's cold. Check. You've made it clear that his body is like hard stone. Check Check. No need to press the concepts, they're not difficult to understand. The fact that the MC constantly thinks about these aspects of the man she loves makes me question her sanity and intelligence. Get past it already.
I'm not going to rip the book through and through, but I will say that this is going to be a long painful trip. Maybe I can claim a sprained eyeball? Le Sigh (as Elana is so fond of saying).
What can we learn from this poor writing? When we're describing our characters, we need to do what we can to avoid repetition. We have to assume that the reader will remember the fact that our fair lady has long blonde tresses, that she uses a red hair tie because red reminds her of the bloody roses growing near her dead lover's grave (this is an example, not an excerpt from Twilight). Once we've put this description out there, we should feel confident that the image has been burned into their minds and doesn't need repeating unless the situation really warrants it. Subtle reminders of a MC's physical characteristics are okay, but we don't want to bash the reader over the head with it repeatedly.
I got an email from NaNoWriMo yesterday, and it struck a chord. I was wavering on the edge for this one, but I've concretely decided to make it a goal. I will be participating this November, and come the 30th, I will have a 50K+ MS drafted. It's pretty daunting to me, considering the fact that I will need to write over 1600 words per day. But I'm going to jump in with both feet and give it a shot.
Lastly, I want to pose a challenge to you all. I received an blogger award on Monday, and although the award was really awesome, the listing of my seven favorite things was really the reward. That might sound a bit odd, but as I worked through the list, I found myself celebrating my life. It was really fun, especially as I reflected on what that said about me (thanks to Galen). My challenge to you all is this - List your seven favorite things (either in a post or here in comments). You may surprise yourself (and the rest of us) with what makes the list.
I was surprised to find that one of the items involved my writing. A year ago, that wouldn't have been anywhere in my mind. Ain't it funny where life takes us?