Sometimes, we find ourselves talking about writing, reading about writing, but not actually doing any writing. Sometimes, this is fine, but other times we must discipline ourselves into doing what we supposedly love to do – write.
At present, I don’t feel that I’m writing a lot but I am thinking “writing” all the time. I have several projects happening right now, but only two of them are what I class as “current”. These two projects are:
1. Cat’s Eyes – my children’s chapter book.
2. Squatters – my children’s short story.
I’ll talk about the short story first. With just under 2,000 words written, I can safely say that I’ve only just realised where this story should really start. This means that the first 1,500 words will be cut. 🙁 My investigation of the children’s market told me that I need to write a short story that is up to 3,000 words for it to be successful. That’s fine, except at 2,000 words my story has a long way to go. My mistake is that I’m trying to show my MC’s life so that the reader will cheer for her when she finally manages to break free. However, I need to do this within the action (and not as a lead up) because the story is starting to drone on and on. The story is harder to write than I imagined it would be, but I’ll get there.
Meanwhile, Cat’s Eyes has received critiques from every corner of the world. Most of the comments are positive, all are encouraging, and some comments are conflicting. I expected that. Some people have mentioned the tiniest things that have sparked a massive research spurt on my part – all in the name of improving the story. I’m fully aware of the weakest scene, and will fix it or dump it (I’m not sure yet). I can see where readers need more description and more history. I can even see where the characters need pushing into action, and where what I see isn’t necessarily what the reader sees. The critiquing will come to an end in two and a bit weeks, at which time I will sit down with the manuscript and read it myself (and take my own notes). With previous manuscripts I was left with uncertainty, but with Cat’s Eyes I’m feeling positive. This is the one!
For me, the lack of writing is good, because I’m researching to make one manuscript better and I’m trying to decipher what I already have to make the short story work. That’s quite different to talking about writing, but never doing it.