In case you were wondering what happened to the book…it went on hold for a few weeks during the whole NexTag debacle (they almost offered me a position but stuck it on hold at the very last moment), but I’m back at work on it now. I was suffering pretty badly from being blocked on it, and it really didn’t help that none of my friends are writers. My mom suggested that I try taking a class just to have someone to talk the book over with–so I signed up for a story writing class that meets on Mondays, up in the city. First class was last night–nothing too novel out of it, but I did get a chance to brainstorm some solutions to my book’s structural problems.
I have the feeling I might have intimidated some of the other people in the class without meaning to–perhaps because there’s a certain ambience to saying “I am researching and writing a book” that makes people think you actually know what you’re talking about. (Hah!) The honest truth is that I got up in front of about 1500 people and announced I was writing this thing, without having the FOGGIEST idea what I was doing. The upside of this otherwise eminent stupidity is that having made that commitment publicly, I HAVE to write this book–whereas if I hadn’t announced to a bazillion people that I was going to do it, I might very well have given up by now. There’s something to be said for making your stupidities public–if nothing else, it raises the stakes.
The funny part is that most of my classmates seem to be as good if not better at writing than I am, so it’s really got nothing to do with talent.
Meanwhile, I volunteered to be one of the first people to have their writing samples critiqued, because (a) I actually have the time to write seven pages between now and Friday, (b) it will *force* me to create a sample chapter, no matter how bad, and (c) it means I get to be critiqued twice, once at the beginning of the class and once at the end. Getting more critiques is really important to me, I think it will help my writing.
Of course, that means I have what, three days to write my sample chapter? Oh well, I’d been putting it off way too long anyway.