project 20 :: what is a single goal or resolution you have for 2003? why do you have this resolution or goal? is this the most important goal for the year? why or why not?
welcome to a new year, a new design, new chances, new goals. and one very old goal.
my journey as a writer actually began when i was a preteen. at that time i wrote truly bad poetry and read children's and y.a. classic literature plus a lot of horse books. in my early teens i began branching out into short stories and dreamed of writing a novel and getting published.
then some idiot told me that with every tom, dick, and harry writing "the great american novel" i didn't have a chance to be published.
notice, they didn't say i was a lousy writer, only that the manuscript would get buried under everyone else's. however, i was a sensitive teenager and i took it to mean i was a lousy writer. for the next 20 years i wrote very little - some very dark and depressing poetry for the most part, self-expression when i was depressed. but i also began gaming and used it as a g.m. to create realistic scenarios for my players, something i think they all appreciated. and i did start a novel.
assassin's choice was originally started for the players involved in the game it was based on back in 1990. when the gaming group dissolved, so did my efforts to work on it. after all, i had given up my dream of being a published writer so why bother?
then, in 2000, a few friends, online and off, encouraged me to pick up my dream as a writer again. visions is long gone now, it never really flew as a paying zine, but there are so many ezines out there that they all have a chance of folding at any time, even the free ones. and the ones showcasing one person's work are probably more likely to fold than any other unless that one person is already a well known writer. i'm not . . . yet.
the novel i worked to death for that zine was a resurrected assassin's choice. i don't know why i didn't set it aside when visions went under. more friendly encouragement, i'm sure. but i began trying to really write. when i went to the university, my major was english with a concentration in creative writing. i joined workshops and started reading books on how to write. and i threw out the old assassin's draft twice more and started recrafting it from zero again.
last year assassin's
became my learning novel. to be honest, it has been my learning novel all along, but last summer i finally acknowledged it as such. trust me, this alleviated a lot of my frustration. it is hard to be patient with 4 complete and total rewrites from scratch if you think you're writing for publication. by looking at it as a learning novel, it becomes a lot easier to accept mistakes.
but looking at it as a learning novel also did something else: it freed me to experiment with how i write. as a result i developed a new way of approaching my writing and finally walked away from trying to be something i'm not. i'm not an intuitive writer. i cannot start at word one and expect to end at the last word, i stall. in ever novel i've tried to write, this has happened. i finally began to accept that all those novelist who are intuitive writers are right . . . for them. but i'm different and that's okay. i'm among those who needs to structure the entire novel first. and then i build on the structure until i start adding scenes. eventually the scenes begin to connect and, at some point, i have a novel. a novel that needs revision, but a novel none the less. revising, after all, is the work of the writer.
assassin's turns 13 this year. i'd like to actually finish the first draft, from beginning to end. maybe not the revisions, but definitely the first draft. it's not my most important goal of the year - employment for either saxy or i definitely comes before that, but it's an important one. i'm making great progress on it: the whole thing is outlined and sctructured, character profiles are being done, descriptions have been added to the first section, and scenes are starting to come out and get added to the draft. i feel motivated and excited about it in a way i've never felt about this or any other novel before. will it be published? i don;t know. i hope so. but, regardless, it's about time it actually got finished.
by the way, if you find any errors in the links or design, please let me know. it's been tested in i.e., netscape 7, and opera 6 something. i won't guarantee anything in older browsers, but who knows, it just might fall apart in something current. i haven't been too handy with the web design of late. too busy writing.
having its original qualities unimpaired as (1) full of or renewed in vigor, (2) not stale, sour, or decayed, (3) not faded, (4) not worn or rumpled; not altered by processing; not salt; free (1) from taint (pure), (2) of wind; experienced, made, or received newly or anew; additional, another; original, vivid; lacking experience, raw; newly or just come or arrived; having the milk flow recently established <a fresh cow>