#WIPWednesday: 2/17/16

Hi, everyone! It’s time for another #WIPWednesday/#WIPpetWednesday!

WIP: I Chose the Monster

Writing or Revising: Revising

Progress Since Last Week:

  • I’ve edited up through Chapter 4.
  • I continued working on my outline of all the scenes I wrote in my rough draft, and I’m about 75% done with that.

How It’s Going:

Things are going okay. Now that I’m starting to get in the swing of editing, it doesn’t feel quite so overwhelming. I’m also getting feedback from a couple other writers, and it’s really helping me. Some of their suggestions have confirmed some of my worries––which is good, because it makes me feel more compelled to tackle those things. But also they’ve pointed out things that never even occurred to me, and that has been really eye-opening.

Getting some feedback and starting my outline has made me feel a little more confident. A week ago, I was seriously considering chucking the entire first draft and starting from scratch. I was really overwhelmed with the work I had to do.

Now I’m thinking a lot of the story is actually salvageable. There’s a ton I need to rewrite, flesh out, add, and remove––but I’m trying to tackle it one thing at a time. If I get too caught up in trying to fix everything at once, I’m never going to get it done. It’s going to be a lot of work, but I’m starting to feel like I can do it.

Goals For Next Week:

  • Finish the outline of my first draft.
  • Edit at least two more chapters.
  • I’m still struggling a bit with figuring out what the central conflict of my plot should be, since right now it’s all over the place. I’ve been thinking maybe I need more of a concrete villain, since right now I don’t really have one. If I had a character to kind of embody the conflict (if that makes sense), I feel like that might help. So, at least I’m going to think about that.

WIPpet:

#WIPpetWednesday is a weekly meme where writers share a snippet of their WIP. The only rule is, it somehow has to be related to the date.

Today is 2/17, so this WIPpet is 17 lines from page of the chapter I most recently edited.

“Your parents are right here.”

He barely finishes the sentence before my parents stumble into view. My mother’s dark hair is in disarray, and she frantically brushes the strands from her eyes. Her face is pale, while my dad’s face is flushed.

“Nina?” my mom cries. She presses her hands to the glass.

I’m in a dream, as I lower my feet to the floor and move to the window. Now my dad’s hands are also on the glass. I put my hands up too. One of my palms against each of theirs. But all I can feel is the hard coldness that separates us.

Tears finally swell at the corners of my eyes and spill down my face. My parents’ eyes are red, their faces streaked with wet trails.

“I’m sorry,” I choke out.

“No,” my mom says. “Nina …” She sobs, leaning her forehead against the window.

Whatever she was going to say, she doesn’t finish saying it.

Suddenly, I’m thinking of all the stupid arguments. The screaming matches. The times I’ve said I hated my parents just to use it as a weapon against them. All the things I’ve said and done just to hurt them.

God, I wish I could take it all back.


 

How about you guys?

  • How are your WIPs going? Are things going well? Are you struggling with anything?
  • If you’re a fellow #WIPpetWednesday participant, feel free to link me to your post!
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15 thoughts on “#WIPWednesday: 2/17/16

  1. I’m glad you’ve got some feedback partners. It definitely helps when you can get a second pair of eyes on something. I’m in the editing/revising stage of my WIP. I understand the feeling of wanting to chuck it and rewrite. I powered through that and I’m actually quite excited about my story. Outlining and adding/deleting/changing scenes has really fleshed it out. Though the best thing I’ve done so far was explore my characters, identify their goals and motivations, overarching and scene-by-scene.

    Your WIP sounds interesting! I love the lines you shared. It’s rich with complicated emotions and makes me really curious about the circumstances surrounding it. I really love the line about the hard coldness that separates them!

    1. Yes, a second pair of eyes helps so much! I’m glad your revisions are going well. 🙂 Fleshing out my characters is one of my primary concerns right now. There are too many of them and none of them are interesting enough, lol. And now I’m starting to think I’ve started the story in the wrong place, so I may need to backtrack a bit. I am trying to just take it one step at a time!

      Thank you. 🙂 One of the other main things I’m trying to tackle is making my characters’ emotions clearer, so I’m glad to hear the emotions come through!

      1. Thanks! That’s good. Characters are certainly quite fun. Add more drama and conflict, more clashing personalities. That always helps bring stale characters to life. You get the best sense for them when you see them handling conflict. Lol. I had to do the same thing, though I only went back about an hour in the storyline. Kind of amazing how much that small change improved the story. That’s a good mindset. Little by little! You will get there. 🙂 I recommend buying the Emotions Thesaurus. It’s a good tool to figure out alternative ways for character’s to express emotions.

        1. Good advice! I think part of my issue right now is that most of my characters have the same personality. Making them more unique will hopefully create interesting dynamics and add to the conflict! I think I actually have the Emotions Thesaurus––I will have to look for it. 😀

          1. That can happen. Also fixing their personalities will probably solve other problems you have with the draft. Good luck! Yes, go find it! It’s quite useful. 🙂

  2. I was completely sucked into the world of your WIPpet in that short segment. Now I want to read more! 🙂 And I understand where you’re coming from with the concrete villain thing. In my WIP, the central issue is an idea really, rather than a single person. Good luck figuring it all out 🙂

    1. Thank you so much! That sounds like exactly what I’m going through with my WIP. The only “antagonist” is … a disease and a bunch of zombies. I think it needs more of a central villain, and maybe that will help me find a focus for the plot as well. Thanks, and good luck to you too!

  3. Great excerpt. Since I don’t know anything about the story, it leaves me with lots of questions. which is awesome! that’s what you want.
    Progress for me: I am still trying to work out the chapter word counts. I leave myself comments for stuff to fix/rewrite later. But I am halfway through. Trying to fix chapters that are huge and ones that are too small is kinda difficult, having to find new endings, and new segues…blah.
    The progress I did complete: I made a new outline of scenes, fixing some issues, changing the POV in some scenes, and developing a better goal for my male protagonist. This 2nd book has always been the more difficult one to write. I actually wrote 3/4 of book 3 before I wrote this one lol. Then, I tried to figure out how to switch them, but the timing of book 3 is important or it wouldn’t make sense. That doesn’t make sense to anyone but me lol
    Congratulations on getting an outline down. That will help in many ways I am sure!

  4. I had that lost feeling, too. I’ve currently backed off from revising a completely pantsed novel, and I’ve been cutting my teeth on short stories. I have a shorter, plotted novel I’ll be getting too this year, too.

    What has really helped is having a small critique group. Each of us sees different things, and because I’m seeing their pieces every week, while they’re reading mine, I get double doses of learning. Each one of those opinions is powerful, and often they find things I hadn’t thought of.

    Something else I can recommend is Rock Your Revisions (also Rock Your Plot, if you want to figure out some of that character stuff ahead of time the next time through.) Both are open-ended, giving you a framework to follow without stifling creativity.

    I see it as a bit of an archaelogical dig. It takes time, and effort, but the results can amaze!

    The snippet you shared here is powerful and put me right into the scene, wondering what’s going on, and why she’s separated from her parents.

    1. Critique groups are great! Taking a lot of writing workshops in college helped me immensely. Now that I’ve graduated I need to find a new outlet, haha. Maybe I can find a local writing group or something. For now I’m just swapping chapters with other writers via email, but that works pretty well too. 🙂

      I hadn’t heard of Rock Your Revisions, but I just looked it up and it looks like a useful guide! I might buy it for my Kindle. Thanks for the recommendation!

      That’s a good way to think of it. You need to dig through all the dirt to find the good stuff. 😉

      Thank you, glad to hear you liked the excerpt!

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