Okay, so I started re-writing Djinnocide for the billionth time (really 4th or 5th - it just feels like a billion). And I'm finding myself with the same damn problems I had before. How do you get a book out of a rut? Or is the problem that it doesn't really need to be rewritten at all and that's why I keep coming back to the same plot points?
I've tried writing other things. Really I have. I've tried setting this book so far from myself it's but a mere speck on my writerly horizon. But this story and these people are so awesome I can't shake them. I just wish I could make other people see them the way I see them. (And by 'other people', I mean people who can get this book in print. The other people who've read it all the way through loved it, too.)
Maybe I still need time away. Except I'm itching to write. I can't stop thinking about this story. Jo and Zeke and Tryg and Mary dance through my head taunting me and begging me and threatening to run me through if I so much as try to ignore them. Michael threatened to sue me for breach of contract. Amun even whispered that he'll find a wish to kill me - his own author - if I don't get back to work.
That's a lot of pressure from the voices in my head and... ummm... I'll let you in on a little secret...
I'm afraid I can't do them justice. I mean, I thought I did them justice the first time, but my readers all said I didn't. Hence the rewrites. And obviously the agents all thought I didn't because I've been rejected too many times to bother counting anymore. So here I am, staring down the barrel of another rewrite wondering if perhaps I don't have the chops to put this story on paper anymore. Hell, I wonder if I ever did have those chops.
And yet, I can't stop the voices. I can't shut this story up. This book is pushier than any other one I've written. Jo wants to be out there, sharing the shelves with Toby Daye and Harry Dresden. And I think she deserves to. I just don't know if I do.
My advice is to show it to someone else. I'm always amazed at the solutions my beta readers come up with that I can't see. Good luck! If the story is calling to you, there's something there.ReplyDelete
I'm glad to see that I am not the only one in that boat. I wake up at night, plagued by my characters in my medieval romance. They refuse to be shoved under the bed! And when I think of rewrites (for the zillionth time), I literally shut down. Creativity takes a back seat and I am stalled.ReplyDelete
Maybe you and I need to do a book swap?
Oh, I know that problem! You can't leave the story, but the story won't "let" you fix it. When that happens, I just keep brainstorming and brainstorming until something works itself out.ReplyDelete
I like Theresa's idea too. :)
I agree with Theresa--you need some objective readers--someone who is completely new to the thing to look at it. I have a novel just like this; I can't let it go so about every two months I try to rewrite it. I enjoy slow torture.ReplyDelete
I love that title!!ReplyDelete
Take yourself out of your regular environment...take the semi-long vacation you've been waiting on, do that 10 mile hike that you said you'd do at the beginning of summer but haven't, visit an old friend of relative....have that uncommon other experience, and them get back to the work with rested eyes.ReplyDelete
I first book is in that boat. I couldn't get any agent to like it as much as I did. I've decided to put it on the shelf for right now and concentrate on my WIP. I'm almost done.ReplyDelete
Another thought is to change the story around, use the same characters, just the plot, or how they get to where you want them to go. Good luck!