Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Plot Conundrum

Here's the thing, I recently had a wonderful rejection (wonderful - go figure. And on my birthday too!) where an editor told me that my plot was too complex and contrived. So now I need to try to make it simpler but keep the conflict element high. What to do?

How to make a simple plot that is both compelling and emotionally deep?

What I have learnt is that the hero and the heroine need to be driven by their conflict, not by some authorial contrivances - it is not up to me to make them do things - their conflict has to make them do things!!

My story is about a woman who cannot have children and a man who desperately wants them. The woman is frightened of rejection because of her emotional and physical scars. THIS is the conflict. This is the plot. Everything has to revolve around this. Each scene, each drama has to come back to this theme and plot.

Sounds easy? So far so good - three chapters in and it's going okay.

Yeah well, come back in a week and let you know how I'm doing!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Time flies....

And so it is another month and more since my last blog...maybe I should just bite the bullet and just commit to writing it once a month! That way I'll get over my guilt and maybe even get it done!

And so - where were we??? Diet - still going strong. Lost 4kg so far. Which is totally surprising considering the amount of time I've been sitting in my chair. The good - no, great - news is that the reason for sitting in the chair is that I have been writing.

Book one is getting more and more polished. Book two is slowly taking form.

What I find surprising is how much I am connected to my two main characters... Jack and Ellie from Book One... I am so reluctant to leave them alone. They are happy, everything is resolved, but I still have a hankering to make sure they're okay! And they aren't even real people!

Discussing this with my mother (who is so NOT a writer) she suggested I drop a bomb on them and that way I won't worry about them anymore.!!!! Can you believe it??? Drop a bomb on wonderful North Beach? Kill off my lovely friends????

But if I don't do something drastic I won't be able to invest as much into book two...... And Megan and Nathan are hanging in mid sentence waiting to find out who the intruder is...... maybe Mum has a point!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Missing in Action


And there I was feeling so completely proud of myself, when in reality I have failed. Failed big time.

I haven't touched my blog for over 2 months! The diet is going okay though.

But, I have good reason for this tardy blog - and that is because I have been concentrating so hard on my novel that I completely forgot the time...but now it is finished! I can finally raise my head above the parapet.

Well, when I say finished I mean - first draft is finished. I need to put it away for a few days and get some perspective, then edit, edit, edit.

BIG NEWS: I won the chance to pitch to Lucy Gilmour at Mills&Boon - and she was so lovely... and asked me to send her my synopsis and first three....woohheeee.... off it went yesterday and now I play the waiting game.

Still, in the meantime there's the perspective, the editing and the next novel - right???

Ciao for now

Monday, January 4, 2010

Happy New 2010

As one year melts (literally - it's summer here and the temperature's pushing the mercury) into another it's time to take stock of 2009 and set goals for the year ahead.

2009: personally it's been a good year. I've kicked back and relaxed, had good times with friends and seen good friends go through tough moments. Hopefully I've helped them. Career-wise -it's been a huge learning curve. Having taken a break from paid employment to concentrate on writing I've learnt a few things:
Writing is hard
Writers needs 'stickability', perseverence and a very thick skin
Writers need goals

Goal setting and me are not something usually mentioned in the same sentence! Sure, I've made many resolutions in the past - always the same things: lose a stone in weight, get fitter, get book published - you know the score.

Curiously, I've never achieved them. (Although my son was agog when I said I would have the same resolution this year as for the past 30 years - to lose a stone. "You were 30 stone?" he asked amazed. - LOL! NO! I just never lost that original stone).

I guess the saying is true: "If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got".

What I've been lacking, I think, is clearly defined goals and steps to achieve those goals. Apparently they need to be SMART. So, here goes, these are the goals I thought of on New Year's Eve:

Writing Goals:
-Write every week day in school term - think of it as a job, not a hobby
-Finish current ms by end of March
-Submit to 2 publishers
-Finish next mss first draft by end of November ready for editing
-Enter Clendon, Emerald and Emily competitions
-Attend RomAus conference in Sydney
-Blog once a fortnight

Personal Goals:
-Spend more time with hubby doing fun things together
-Finish curtains for lounge
-Finish curtains for bedroom (had material for 3 years)
-Paint bedroom
-Get to UK to see sister's new baby somehow......
-Phone my Mum once a week

Health Goals:
-Walk at least 4 times a week for an hour
-Eat 5+ a day!
-Adopt a positive attitude and be grateful for the good things in life

Day 5 of the new year and so far:
-Have written once (it's school holidays though)
-Had 10 days off with husband and looking forward to another 2 weeks from this friday
-Eaten 5+ a day for last 4 days and feel great!