Sunday, May 29, 2011

Secret Projects

I was surfing through my blogroll this morning when I ran across a post by Shayda Bakhshi wherein she mentions that her current project is a secret and how she doesn't want to jinx it.  Man, do I know how she feels.

I haven't talked much about my WIP.  There's no progress bar gracing the side of my blog.  It only just got a real name the other day - when I realized I can't keep calling it 'Hey, You' and have it come out as a real story.  (Okay, so it wasn't really Hey You, it was Untitled-Fantasy, but you get the drift.)

Reading Shayda's post this morning got me thinking about why that is.  Why is this project secret when I never had a problem talking about other projects before?  Is it just the jinx factor or is it something more?

Which lead me back to yesterday's post about fear.  I don't want to talk about this WIP because I'm afraid of it.  It's not like anything I've ever written.  Not only is it straight fantasy, but it's got a decidedly YA/MG slant to it.  (It hasn't told me which it wants to be yet, but it's not 'adult'.)  It's also got a male protagonist - something I've only done once before and that mystery never saw the light of day.

I'm afraid of this book.  I mean, I really love the idea and I really want to write it, but what if I'm not good enough to write this story?  What if I fail to do it justice?  And really, who the hell do I think I am trying to write a genre I haven't really read much of in years?  (I used to inhale fantasy, but the only fantasy I've read lately is Jim Butcher's Codex Alera series.)  And who the hell am I to think I can write from the perspective of a teenage boy in an alternate world? 

But this story is a bully.  It came to me as part of a dream, slapped me around and told me I was going to write it.  Or else.  And I better do a good job or it's going to kick my ass.  After which it will kick all my other manuscript's asses.  It's already kicked all the other ideas out of my head until it's all I can think about.  Hell, every time I even think about going back to my old stories - just to edit a little, really - it threatens their lives.  "Forget about them for now," it says, "or you can forget about them... permanently."  :cue ominous music:

What I need to do is just give in and write the damn thing.  Toss out 50-60K in a first draft, so I can work on some other stuff - stuff I know I know how to write, like speculative or suspense.  Maybe then it won't have to be such a secret anymore and I can start working on other stuff.

Until then, though, this project is secret.  (Other than the secrets I just let slip about it here.)  Lord help us all.

Have you ever had a secret project?  What made you want to keep it a secret?


  1. I've had a lot of secret projects. I think keeping them secret is a way of maintaining the excitement.

  2. My projects aren't exactly secret, but I don't often go around talking about them, either. I always feel scared that I'm not going to make my story good enough, as good as the idea deserves to be. But then, no one else could either, because it's my story.

  3. I'll share just about anything if someone asks me (or sometimes even if they don't!). So, never had a secret one. Though since joining the blogosphere I've realized that it's best to keep some cards to your chest. I started a new adult book which I may keep semi-secret.

  4. I have a few secret projects and I think it's probably got more to do with worrying that I'll not write them as well as I feel they deserved to be written.

  5. I have a couple secret projects. Only one or two people know about them!