Not that those who read my blog don’t get a sample of my writing every week.
And not just a small sample either. I’m hardly one to skimp on either my words or the ideas conveyed with them.
No one has ever accused my writing style of being “spare”. In university, I played the usual word-processor tricks with font size and margins, but in my case it was because my reports were always too long, not too short.
As much as I try to not be wasteful with the written word, I’d be a moron to not realize the abbreviation TL;DR was created precisely for people like me.
In this instance, however, when I say a sample of my writing, I mean my writing. The writing I don’t usually readily share.
Over and over and over (it) again
In 2014, I created a special “About” page on this website for my novel-progress. On this page, I’ve included a short summary of the novel’s plot and sub-genres, information about my progress (which I update as appropriate), and a couple of photos that I use as inspiration.
I also included a section for an excerpt. But for three long years, all I’ve had listed beneath this heading is a single word: “forthcoming”.
This is because, for the last three years, I’ve had nothing worthy to share. Not before I rewrote the entire novel, its first draft having been written in the wrong genre, as well as the remaining two books in the series.
On top of all that, I spent weeks wracking my brain to figure out what scene I should post. And then even more weeks revising the scene beyond what I’d already obsessively done, to the point of that famous Oscar Wilde quote about removing commas in the morning and adding them back in the afternoon.
(In total, according to Microsoft Word, I’ve spent a whopping 277 minutes on this 900-word excerpt. Or at least that’s how long I’ve had the document open on my computer and weighing upon my thoughts.)
There comes a point in writing, as in all things in life, when you have to just let it go. Although it might yet change in the final draft, that’s what I’m doing with this excerpt for now.
Ultimately, I chose the scene that, in Hero’s Journey parlance, represents the Call to Adventure of my main character, Aline. Upon completing the second draft of my novel and finally gaining a sense of what Aline’s adventure and the overarching story question actually were, the choice of this scene became obvious.
Here it is:
Lord Edward Terrin slowly closed the gap between us, his eyes never leaving me.
“I don’t still frighten you do I, Lady Aline?” he asked. “Of course, every lord expects some fear—and much obedience—from all the vassals beneath him. But I was certain you understood that as a person, albeit a person with two different colored eyes, I mean you no harm. Especially since I want you to work for me.”
6 thoughts on “A Small Sample of My Writing”
Congratulations on passing another milestone. I remember the trepidation with which I started serializing my own UNFINISHED debut novel, and how, after a while, it just became something I did every week.
The mental part you’ve just done. Hope it gives you a boost psychologically to keep going.
Milestones belong in your rearview mirror.
Thanks, Alicia. I’m not planning to serialize my novel – I think the heyday of that sort of thing has largely passed – but I definitely wanted to get a sample up to prove to people that I actually can write – that I’m not all talk.
Well done! I can imagine the 277 minutes on 900 words because when I do that I spend most of the time sitting, thinking, rewriting, walking around, rewriting again. Great work.
Thanks, Dianne! I was a little shocked when I saw that stat, but knowing myself and the way I whittle away at my writing, I totally believe it. Nice to know I’m not the only one like that. 🙂
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“although it does contain some romantic elements”
Yessssssss. 🙂 Get that sucker finished and published!
I promise I will, just as soon as I can. I don’t want to take this long writing a book ever again!