I thought about making this a throwaway in the random romps thread, but I've also been thinking about starting a "let's kickstart some stories/revise some shit/be writers again" thread. The time is now.Let's talk about writing, post funny stuff/kicks in the butt/etc., and see where it takes us.
For example, at the macro level I see many novels where the real story doesn't start till Chapter 4: Chs 1-3 are all just trundling towards the starting grid. And then there's the cry that your research is showing; historical or geographical facts are deliciously seductive to the writer, and it's by making the detail believable that we get the reader to suspend their disbelief in the story. But we're storytelling, not writing a gazeteer or a history book, and anything that doesn't serve the story is weakening it.... So don't beat yourself up. Ch1-3 are all backstory that you needed to work out: they're process writing, not a failure or mistake, and now they've achieved their purpose and can be cut.... Instead of regarding such things as mistakes, maybe we should see them as a dressmaker's tacking stitches; the wooden scaffolding over which the arches of the bridge are formed; the paper collar round the soufflé dish that you take off once the gelatine has set. They're part of the fundamental nature and process of creating that thing.
Figure out what kind of writer you are. Some writers need to understand every detail of the story before they even sit down to start writing it. Some just think of a plot and characters. Some need the base story arc. Others do not plan the story at all and let the story shape itself as they write it."There is no good way, no bad way, it just depends on how you are built. I know writers who know nothing about the book until they sit down to write it. For them, writing is exploring. I know people who need to work it out in excruciating detail -- for example, John Irving. John Irving says that he does not start the book until he knows the last line of the book," said Schroeder.
"Every writer has a little medicine bag," said Schroeder. "Nobody knew what was in it. If you opened it up and showed it to people, they would understand the significance of it. But it was for you, it was magic."
Ursula K. Le Guin's Call to Action for AuthorsWhile accepting the National Book Foundation's Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters, celebrated science fiction and fantasy author Ursula K. Le Guin urges authors to remember why they do what they do. Her argument that writing is an art form rather than a commodity is inspiring and one any avid reader must watch!