Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Calling All Writers

I plan to write a regular blog later today, but I'm anxious to get some advice from my writer friends I've been connecting with lately.

Here's my dilemma:

  • I have one novel completed (being looked at).
  • I have two other novels at least 50 pages in, but life took over and I stopped writing them (I plan to complete both in the future).
  • I am well into a non-fiction work (with a goal of completing the first draft in Oct.)

All of a sudden a new character keeps banging on the door of my brain and this morning I began to write her story. It fires me up. I know it's original & intriguing and I'm being infiltrated with character details about her...(the idea surfaced months ago...but now the details are surfacing).

Here's where I need the help of my writer friends--Advice:

Do I stick to completing the non-fiction work? Do I "go with this new character"...b/c I'm not sure she'll allow me to stop anyway and continue to write this new work? I know most publishers/agents encourage writing in one genre anyway...so my mind's a flood and I'm asking for your input. Has this ever happened to you? If so, how have you brought it in and focused? Should I just work on what excites me at the time?

Thoughts???

13 comments:

  1. Follow the muse, my friend, follow the muse :)

    I have several unfinished novels. I used to say I'd finish them....maybe someday I will. Still, my current work is my favorite so far and it would be sad if I pushed it aside just to follow some silly schedule.

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  2. I would pursue what you feel the most passionate about. But realize that many good writers don't become authors because they never finished their novel. Since you've already completed one, I don't think you'll have a problem with that. If this novel stops tugging at your heart and bearing its secrets, then focus on the non-fiction.

    Good luck!

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  3. Over from SITS.
    I would have to get it all out.
    I think it is totally awesome that you are following your calling and writing.

    oh... and I love your music on your page.
    Bob Marley.... sigh....

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  4. I've been at a week-long novel-writing workshop; it was amazing and transformative.

    Write down what is flowing now. I believe such inspiration is a heavenly gift, and by recording it, you are not only capturing it, you are showing gratitude to its Source.

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  5. I'm all about finishing. (No surprise there, eh?!) :) I like to check off the boxes and cross off my to-do list. So, I say, find out why you don't want to finish your non-fiction. If you're subconsciously looking for a way to get out of finishing (say getting to a hard part or something!), then I would encourage you to persevere. It will only strengthen your writing muscles to stay on the hard climb.

    However, if you really need to have a fiction outlet, I'd say that you should go ahead and get the ideas down on paper.

    I personally love having different outlets for my creativity (besides my one WIP). But I'm also determined not to let those other works distract me from getting it done.

    Ultimately I think you need to follow God's lead in what he wants you to be writing.

    OK, I'll stop. Probably gave you a lot more than you needed! Sorry!

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  6. Thanks for praying for our new son!!! He's been waiting for over a year now in an orphanage and our process has been so SLLLLOOOOOOW. Well, human slow, I'm trusting God's timing. Anyhow, THANKS!!!

    About the writing...oh boy...I have 3 different books and am really trying to get ONE proposal finished. Procrastination is killing me! I like the advice of going with the one that's flowing. Make good use of the inspiration and trust that if that's not God's will, He'll pull the plug.

    Happy writing!

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  7. Hi Wendy! Thank you super much for your feedback on my title and stopping by my blog!
    My thoughts: write where your passion lies! The creative spirit never misleads us. I imagine with your faith so strong, you have brought this to God? Something I have found the most helpful when trying to make these types of decisions is meditation. 20-30 meditating with Jesus yields fruit. Perhaps you do this already. I'm tattle-taleing on myself but for years I avoided meditation and my therapist would say, "Steph, are you meditating?" To which I would internally respond, "NOOOO...STOP TELLING TO DO THAT, I AM PERFECTLY HAPPY BEING IN A DITHER!" Well, she broke me down and I'm a convert. Hope that was helpful.
    Good luck, Wendy!

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  8. You are suffering from what a typical writer's syndrome that I have yet to name. My advice? Stick to one work and finish it.

    Think about it.

    If a publisher/editor/agent asked you to finish a work they believed in and wanted published, but you kept getting bombarded by a bazillion ideas for other work you felt more passionate about (but you still loved the work they're interested in), what would you do?

    Yeah, work on the piece they want you to! Because it will probably sell and get you where you want to go - unless that's not really where you wanted to go.

    My point is that you should train yourself now to finish the projects you believe in and set out to do.

    That is JUST my opinion! Sometimes we can just follow the muse and that's it. Do what you feel is best!

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  9. Popped in from SITS to say hi! As a fellow writer, go with what you feel.

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  10. My 2 cents: Build on that character, you thought her up for some reason, now you just have to rely on the fact that you can make something out of her.

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  11. Blown away, grateful, overwhelmed, inspired, interested, enlightened...these are some of the things I feel based on your advice. Most of all though, I am feeling thankful...I love input, especially from people who've been there...who know this place I speak of.

    Update: 15 pages into this character/this novel and I realize...she's not going to leave me alone and I'm allowing myself some liberty to put the non-fiction piece down for some time (or pick it back up as I feel led).

    I like the idea of staying in the same genre...heck, I like this genre!

    Thank you, thank you, fellow writers!!!

    Thanks also for the strongest advice of delivering this decision into the Hands of the One who will give the best guidance...God.
    ~ Wendy

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  12. Stopping by to say HI from SITS. I'm deeply impressed and inspired by what I have read thus far! Will return soon!

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  13. Hi Wendy, I clicked over from Jody's blog, great question here! For me, I'd probably at the very least start a new notebook to get all those great novel ideas put down in, so that I can go back to it, build, contemplate, etc. For the nonfiction, usually nonfiction is sold to agents/publishers on a proposal, before the book is even written, so have you considered going that route?

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