Day 7 JaNo – 2061 today, 15573 total
One full week of making quota!
I think that four of my six clarion instructors told me that my stories were too neat and tidy, and that what they lacked was little tendrils of things working their way in from the world outside the story. When they told me that I nodded my head. Great idea, having the outside world creeping in at the edges of the story. And, at some level, I understood what they were saying, but I couldn’t really wrap my mind around what was needed enough to do anything about the problem. (Come to think of it, I’m still not sure I know enough to do anything about it, but I *think* I’m starting to understand more of what they meant, and having a firm grasp on the problem is probably a good first step.)
Speaking of the world outside the story, when I was in the (extremely rushed) pre-planning stage of this novel, I had to decide between two possible worlds to write the novel in. The world I chose was a fantasy world with different rules about how life and death works and cool creatures. The other world was a universe with multiple lines of reality, set in the not-too-far future (though I’d be reluctant to call it near future, exactly). Anyway, part of my thought process was that since I have to generate 2k per day, I’d be better off with fantasy than science fiction, because with fantasy I can just make things up (as opposed to a more SFnal world, which would require more research). In retrospect this idea is ludicrous on many levels. For starters, making things up is hard work and takes a lot of time. Not having said time, I end up with a lot of cliches. Also, the fact that it is fantasy has no bearing on the amount of research that needs doin’…How do kilns work? What raw materials go into steel, and how do you mine them? Are llamas strong enough to carry people? And so on and so forth. Now, if I’d chosen to go with a more contemporary setting for my fantasy, maybe it would have been easier going (but that would be true for something SF too. So maybe that’s the way to go for a quick and easy novel-writing-month…write something that is set in the here-and-now. But where’s the fun in that?).