I loved writing this story. The words just flew onto the page. It was a lot of fun to write about Selena working in the FBI instead of as a homicide detective, because I feel like the stories can be broader in scope and not isolated to a single location. Don’t get me wrong, The Runaway Train was a blast to write, and it has done a lot of great things for me as a new author! I can’t wait for you to see what else I have in store for Selena, and I hope that you enjoy her adventures as much as I enjoy telling them.
I’m pleased to announce that my book “The Runaway Train” has hit a Bestsellers list on Amazon! The book is listed as one of the top short mystery reads, and I am very proud of that little story. Thanks to everyone who decided to check out Montana Marrenger’s first mystery!
In other exciting news, The Truth About Alex should be completed this weekend. It didn’t go according to plan, exactly, because I wanted to have the book released before Christmas. The holiday season proved to be as busy as ever, not to mention that the story had to undergo a little bit of a surgery. Yes, writers are also surgeons.
It’ll go immediately to Betas, then the editor (C.H. Hart), proofreader, cover artist, and then finally, hopefully, it will be beaten into some sort of thing that is legible and interesting.
It’s a phenomenon that occurs more often than not with many writers out there. Sometimes, it sprouts up during the first few pages, chapters, or even near the end of the material that they’ve been pouring their hearts into. They want to go back and perfect what they have already written, rewrite that opening scene and reimagine their main characters before they have even finished the material.
This is what I call the First Draft Blues.
It isn’t fun, by any means, and it certainly makes your book/story take an eternity to complete. Here are some simple guidelines to help pull you out of that funk, and like dropping a pebble in a pond, help you to develop the ability to keep moving, one word after another.
Don’t Agonize Over Getting It Right The First Time!
Every writer out there has to edit or revise their work, and nothing comes out perfectly the first time through. A general rule of thumb is that when you’ve poured your heart out into that first draft and completed it, set it aside for a couple of weeks. Come back after the allotted period of time and re-examine the material. This will give you the opportunity to look at your creation with fresh eyes.
Have Fun With It
Writing is a very personal experience. The first draft is no exception, but that doesn’t meant that you should think of it as a chore. You will dread sitting down to it everyday , and that will reflect in your piece. Instead, allow yourself free reign, let loose, and don’t give two thoughts about what anyone else will think of your little masterpiece during the first draft stages. What’s the most important is that you write it out, get the idea out there and completed, and have fun doing so.
Be At Peace
Atmosphere is everything to some writers. When you are at peace, you are open to creative energy. Creative blocks are enough to make you anxious and in an all around bad mood, but loud and busy surroundings can take that single block and build a house with it. Set your area up for success, perhaps with music. Remember that writing is a solitary practice. When you are beginning to feel at peace, or in the zone, you will begin to relax and the words will spill over the pages before you know it.
There are far too many self instructional books declaring how a fiction novel should be written. Fiction stories should never be bogged down by transparent formulas and mathematical boredom. If someone requires a book to show them how to tell a story, then the person simply has no business telling them in the first place. Certainly, there is a distinctive difference between telling a tale verbally and writing one, but the only person that can tell you how to write it is yourself. If we eliminate the science and stick with the fiction, what stories would be told!
An editor will say that the novel would be better if you went in a different direction instead of the one that the story logically dictates because, like a greasy cheeseburger, it should be suitable for mass consumption. This has never exactly happened to me, but it certainly has with many other authors. Plain and simple, the manuscript is not a manuscript to you. It’s a story. One that you wish to share with the world. It’s not a profit or checkout item or documents in a mundane office that need to be sorted through. Alas, if someone wishes to be published, they must view their personal creations as a lump of cow to be chopped, processed, and shipped to countless departments until whatever the machine spews out at the end is a different creation altogether. That’s the nature of the business. John Steinbeck once said in a mock conversation with an editor, “Here’s my book, do you want to publish it or not?”
A writer MUST comprehend that his work IS the business, and it is the writer’s responsibility to treat it as such if he or she wishes to share their story with the world, regardless of what version it may become. At least it would be out there and in the minds and hearts of the most important people in the world…readers.