Tuesday, July 5, 2016

NaNo Ideas 2016 Edition

So, I'm writing my fourth novel and for the most part I'm basing it on a short story I wrote several years ago about a "revenge fantasy." It was more than any other story, a release of frustration on my part about an aspect of my family (if you'd like a quick read . . . you can find it here).

I have a dilemma. There is a perfectly good motivation in the short story. It makes sense for what the reader knows about the characters. Can it be expanded and would it make as much sense in the novel format? I think so. The problem is that I have stumbled upon what I think may be an even better plot and character motivation and I'm wondering if I should scrap the old, keep with the old and safe the new for a potential novel number five, or try and blend the two together.

I remember reading Stephen King's On Writing (here) and although I hated it, I do remember a nugget or two of good advice from the book. I remember him writing about how he liked being able to always whip out a book in the doctor's office or on the bus and always trying to move forward in his reading and therefore in his writing. That he was always chewing away on his characters and plots and writing. And this I remember well, he wrote, if you aren't trying to always think about and make your writing better, why are you a writer? (or something to that effect).

Nevertheless, I was in one of those moments when I was chewing on my plot when this better idea about a murder came up. I think though the decision is a pretty easy one. This new one is more complex, more deliciously nuanced and it wouldn't do to try and blend them. I'll save the short story sniper plot for next time.