So, having gone through a mini-meltdown following the Muse & the Marketplace, I have come to the realization that I need a vacation from the current piece I’ve been working on for the last year — Club 1692. I’ve gotten far too close to the material and can’t gain enough perspective to perform proper edits (cutting scenes wholesale, etc.).
So, I’ve decided today to shift focus to the next novel. At the very least I can plot it out and explore some character studies. I’ve already got a few scenes written from years ago, so I also have the task of figuring out which, if any, can be kept, and what additional scenes I can envision in the work.
This actually began last night at around 2:00AM when I opened Dramatica Pro for the first time in a year (you could hear the gears in the software grinding the motes of dust in their teeth). While working the story-form in the software, I discovered a wonderful relationship between the antagonist and the helper character that I hadn’t considered before. That went into both my notes and Dramatica.
We’ll see where this change of tact leads. At the very least, if Club 1692 ends up going nowhere, it helped me get through the 1st draft portion of the writing process. Sadly, I haven’t found a really good resource to describe working through the 2nd draft. Does anyone have any suggestions?
I’ve decided to begin a journal on the blog to chronicle my writing process, to inform folks of my personal pitfalls and achievements. While the writing process itself, and the psychology behind it, is well known, the actual path up the mountain — those bits and pieces that apply to those practicing the craft of writing — are unique to the individual writer. It not only differs from writer to writer, but also from piece to piece, and day to day.
The best way to keep the dreaded B (block) at bay is to understand all the tools available to you as a writer, and to learn your particular writing process. Many books on the craft of writing focus on whole approaches under the assumption that the stated methods and techniques, if followed to a T, can result in a successful manuscript. But I’ve seen none that show how to discover your own process. The book that comes closest to that self-discovery is Becoming a Writer, by Dorothea Brande.
So, in this vein, I hope that some of what I post in this Writing Journal will resonate with other writers, and help them past the myth that the writing process is straight-line point-A to point-B. It’s through sharing our trials and triumphs that communities of like-minded people are formed, and through those communities and shared experiences that we no longer feel alone facing that unscalable wall. Others have scaled it before, and can offer us clues as to where to attach that next crampon.
The US Copyright Office is proposing increases to its fees for copyrighting materials as of August 1, 2009. The fee for form CO (used for most fiction and non-fiction) mailed into the Copyright Office for processing will change from $40 to $50. Other fee increases include $65 for other paper forms without barcodes; $80 for group daily newspapers/newsletters; $115 for supplementary registration; $115 for renewal registration; $30 for issuance of receipt for a deposit; $105 for transfer of copyright for a single work, and $30 for transfer of copyright of up to 10 additional titles. Note that the fee increases DO NOT apply to works copyrighted online — those fees will remain at $35. Read more about it here.