First, a warning.
College students across the world are currently enjoying beautiful weather while simultaneously futility attempting to deny the fact that finals are fast approaching. I, myself have four final papers to write within the next month which, unfortunately will mean less time for creative writing. This situation will be good for you, my Faithful Friends, because usually when I procrastinate I wind up here.
Hence, here I am right now.
Second, The Purpose For This Post:
I have turned a major corner with Becoming Mrs. Kennedy. For now that will remain the title because The Sixth Sense was stupid and you all, for the most part, seemed to like the original title better. I have completely rewritten the first chapter and am very pleased with it. 🙂 Go. Me. The first chapter will be posted here as soon as I have typed it. I may also post the first chapter of Damn Brits as well and see if you all think I’m publishable!
Anyway, concerning BMK. While the first chapter’s surgery was a complete success (at least I think so. I may change my mind when I backtrack to edit again) the rest of it still was just not doing it for me. So I pulled out my Easter candy and Oreos (a simply blissful treat after 40 days of separation and, no I did not cheat on Sundays) to comfort me in my sorrow. How could I be such a failure? Two years ago this book was SO DAMN GOOD! Why had I not seen its flaws then?
At the risk of sounding cliché, it suddenly dawned on me: I no longer liked this novel because I was reading it with two more years of life experience under my belt. Those two years were filled with college, leaving home, friendships, drama, heartbreaks (that one in particular I just can’t seem to shake. Maybe I’ll write a character based on He Who Shall Not Be Named and take my vengeance – did I post on this already? My apologies for the regression). In two years, I have matured and become an adult. Living on your own will do that to you (well, for some people). When I wrote the book, I was not the same person I am today. Lo and behold, my experienced eyes look at the naiveté blaring across each page like annoying neon pizza signs and cringe.
Side note – I just painted my finger and toe nails white to fool the eyes of others into thinking my pale skin is less so and made such a thorough mess of it that my hands and feet look like they should be a snowman’s appendages rather than a human’s. This does not help my case for claiming I am an adult.
The problem with my novel was I wrote it while I was still not quite an adult. This means that a) my writing has obviously improved significantly since then and b) it does not fall under the genre of novel. It is a young adult novel.
Once I dubbed it with that title, the writing seemed to fit better, like when you go shopping and finally admit to yourself that you’re not actually a size two and get the size to best suit you. The novel was written by a young adult so why should it not be read by young adults?
With this new title, the characters made more sense, their actions made more sense, the prose made more sense. YA novels, though jam-packed with all literary devices, hidden meanings, and heavy subject matters, can be paced faster and no one will bat an eyelash. Young readers want this. They are so used to the fast paced moern world that anything less is not good enough for them. The action can come more rapidly. The prose doesn’t have to rival the greats. The characters can be more shallow. In short, there is more wiggle room.
I struggled with this new identity for a while. Did I really want to be a YA author? Would people enjoy my work more or less because of this genre jump? Would I be content with a YA novel under my belt?
Then the trailer for Eclipse flashed across the TV and I thought to myself, “Huh. Stepehnie Meyer sure could have done worse.”
Now before Gabby falls to the floor in cardiac arrest, I DO NOT ASPIRE TO WRITE LIKE STEPHENIE MEYER! Her writing style works for her, but I’d rather be compared to Jodi Picoult if and when I ever do get published. If I had to choose an excellent popular writer from today’s time, it would be she (I am also not saying I write like Jodi Picoult. I know I have a long way to go before I reach that level).
SO, BMK is officially a YA novel. Hopefully young adults and their mothers will enjoy it. All I really want is for at least one reader to say to one of her reading friends, “This is my favorite book EVER!” about a book I wrote. I don’t have to be uber famous.
The Master Plan is not really working :(. I’m really trying but college is out to get me. And when I say college, I mean the Glee Club that runs my life. I get knocked down, but I get up again, you ain’t never gonna keep me down… Not sure if those are the real lyrics, but just go with it. What that means is the Master Plan had been revised. I am still doing my very best to dedicate 10PM – 12Am to writing and writing only, but in case this does not happen, I have taken to carting the little notebook in which I am writing Rescue Me and my special pens around campus with me in my Christmas Kate Spade bag. This seems to be working much better than allotted hours. Usually between classes I sit around with nothing to do killing time, but now that I have decided to utilize that time for the advancement of my career and step toward achieving my dreams, Rescue Me is slowly but surely coming along! The gorgeous weather is helping too. I can do this writing outside!
A note on this novel: I would very much like for it to stand on its own, but the prequel, The Maid and the Monarch, regaling the tale of Thomas’s parents, Creig and Alaye, may need to be published before it. I’m still debating on this one. Thomas and Laura are my favorite characters, and I want the world to see them and love them as much as I do as soon as possible, but without the necessary backstory published first … we’ll see. The novel can clearly stand on its own, but there are many characters who are fleshed out so much more in the prequel … ah. I’ll tackle it when the time comes.
Regardless of what gets published first (at this rate, I’ll be dead before anything comes of it) I am on a roll with Rescue Me and am choosing to remain on said roll. The Maid and the Monarch will only be written after Rescue Me is complete. Or if I suddenly become inspired with a fabulous idea and just have to write it down for fear of spontaneous combustion if I keep it in my head …
I think I’ve rambled enough. I suppose I should start that thing called homework …