Saturday, March 28, 2009

Friendly Distance

Well, I'm happy to say that the adages are true. When you're not sure if your piece is ready -- and many times, even if you are -- put it aside for a while and then take another look.

I shelved the fantasy short story I was having trouble with for a few weeks. Took it out last night and re-read it, looking for what to fix. Happily, I believe I solved the problems easily, with the removal of a couple of key lines and the addition of just a little more action.

Now, of course, it's off to my critique partner and beta readers, for them to tell me if they feel I've written a compelling story or merely an okay one that must go back to the drawing board. Or at least the shelf. For a while, anyway.

Yours in relieved wonder,
Anita Ensal

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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Coming Out...Wrong

I'm in the middle of a variety of WIPs, one of which is a short story. I like the story only...I think I'm failing it.

What I mean by that is that the story seems so much more electric and interesting in my brain than it's translating onto the page. I know it's me, after all, who else could it be, but I'm not sure where I'm falling short.

I loved my first draft. Then realized that it seemed somewhat obvious, no surprises at the end, so to speak. So I revised. But it made the story too convoluted. Now I'm at it again, trying to make this work in the way it does in my head.

In my mind, these characters are interesting. Some are mysterious, some are in dire need, some are magical, all are three-dimensional. On the page, they're not working right. And the worst part is that I have a feeling they'd be working just fine in a novel -- only I don't think their story warrants novel-length.

So, I'll dive in again and see what can be done. Many times, if necessary. This is, after all, part of the whole writing process. A painful part, to be sure, but still a necessary one.

Yours in frustrated wonder,
Anita Ensal

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