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Writing hot and cold: My novel’s taking me years

writing

I have been writing a book for about the last seven years or so. I’m about 80% through the first draft.

It took me about three years to write the story line, and then another four years to write the first draft. Obviously, I’ve been working hot and cold on it.

I really do want to get my first draft done, however.

I already have people lined up to read my second draft for me. You know, people I trust.

So I thought I’d post pieces of my book here on my blog to encourage me to write.

You see I look forward to writing this blog every morning. I write in my journal first, as I sip my morning coffee, and that helps me organize my thoughts about what’s happening within me each day.

And I am finding the interaction with people on my blog and reading other people’s blogs very inspiring and encouraging. ( Thank you to all of you who’re reading my blog by the way!) But writing a book is very, well, solitary. And I’ve noticed since my breakdown and my recovery that I’m much more comfortable being social than I used to be.

For example, the idea of going to exercise classes didn’t used to appeal to me at all. I used to go to the gym and work out on my own. Now I only go to classes. I like the interaction with the trainers and the other people working out. Sharing the pain and the sense of accomplishment is very satisfying.

And the same seems to apply to my writing. I used to find blogging harder. I didn’t used to look at other blogs much, and I didn’t blog consistently. I found writing my book easier, when I did it.

Now I like blogging a lot and look forward to getting up to do it. Not only because I am expressing myself and other people are reading my thoughts, but also because I read other people’s blogs every day. I find them creative and funny and poignant. They help me grow.

Bu that doesn’t mean I want to give up on my book because I see it as the first of a trilogy, so I have two more in me after this one. So I think I’ll post pieces of my book here and hopefully that’ll encourage me to write more regularly and finish my first draft.

So here goes. This is the opening scene. It’s a young adult fantasy book.

She was swallowed by the darkness of night as she crept through the Unknown Forest. It was like another world being alone in the forest at night. Liza could feel the movements of the creatures around her with her senses and with her body. She knew the forest so well, and yet, it was so mysterious in what it held. She could actually feel the energy of the creatures living within the woods, and that ability scared and thrilled her still.

“You’d think after all these years I’d be used to this. I mean, how many times have I walked through these woods? Felt their energy? Hundreds of times probably throughout the years. Relax Liza, focus,” she said to herself, reassuringly, “Kilegra’s isn’t far now.”

The trees became denser as she neared Kilegra’s small circular stone home, and with her anticipation she dropped her guard. The razorback emerged immediately in front of her, as suddenly as if he’d appeared in thin air. With lightning speed she pulled her knife as the razorback grabbed and held her by the throat, forcing her backwards into the trunk of a large tree. It was huge, over six feet tall, and weighed at least 300 pounds. Its razor sharp claws and central spinal armour made it virtually impossible to kill.

Liza’s knife sliced into the beast’s vulnerable underbelly causing it to roar and pull back, releasing its hold on her neck. Liza coughed and drew in large, ragged breaths. Her back was against the tree still and she used its solidity to give her forward knee thrust all the more force. The razorback almost lost its balance and she used that moment to slam her knife into the beast’s inner thigh, drawing the knife down as far as she could through its vulnerable, unarmoured flesh. The beast roared in pain and fell backwards into the underbrush, leaving Liza standing over its bloody, screaming form.

So I think this may really help me keep working on it because of course I read it again as I posted it and it takes me right into my characters.

It seems that whenever I have work I get it done no problem, and my blogging is a real thrill, so writing the novel needs some TLC to get it done.

So don’t hesitate to comment or give me some of your tips on how to keep writing. Being a writer is such an important art. There are so many books that have changed my life quite literally, I’d hate to die with the novel still in me.

 

woman green dress arms wide

From the series, Because I’m a woman and because I can! by Jacqueline Snider, writer and editor

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