NaNo 2010

Oct. 24th, 2010 08:16 pm
the_islander: (poet)
I've been pondering this for a while, what with that reading list this semester (~ 4000 pages, to be found here ) and all the other things I have to do. Now I have come to a decision - I will be attempting NaNo once again.
I have not decided on a project yet, though. I feel like I want to continue with TdM, but I also have ideas for a collection of short stories in Romantic style.
Mind that I only use that term in its literary history-sense, that is, denoting a certain literary period which, with regard to German literature at least, comprises philosophical musings, fairytales, fantastic escapism and scholarly research into the Middle Ages (among other things) written between ~ 1790 and 1848. Roughly.

What I certainly won't do: Smut, fan fiction, romance, horror, ninjas, zombies. (I won't exclude vampires just yet...) Yes, I am that weird.

Writing

Aug. 24th, 2010 09:14 pm
the_islander: (Default)
Seeing that I started this journal because I felt in the mood for something new, I thought I'd at least devote it to something useful.
I'll post my writing, under friends lock, I think.
I just have to figure out whether I can friend people from LJ as well.
the_islander: (poet)
... and the Writer is even more so. But let me explain.

I read a lot of books on writing lately, and some of them were quite good, actually. The uni library seems pretty well stocked on that topic, perhaps because they need to encourage all these English Literature students who - except for becoming a writer - don't know how to get a job... Well, back to the topic.
Most books I laid my hands on where more or less writing manuals (How to construct plots, create credible characters, and all that stuff), and thus only partly interesting to me. I do know all the theory about writing, I've been studying literature - called reading when I was not yet at uni -  long enough. I am able to decide whether a plot is fascinating or whether all books by one author are - essentially - the same (good example: Hohlbein). 
What I am not able to do properly is to commit myself to a more or less regular writing pattern, and to keep up the same motivation and inspiration for a longer period of time. Yet.
Funny thing: Two of the books I read came up with very convincing (and very similar) explanations.

The theory is as follows: 
Each writer combines in him/herself two essentially different "personalities" (not quite the right word, though...), that of the creator and that of the editor. While the creator needs spontanity, sensitiveness and an almost childlike openness to old and new things alike in order to produce some sort of art, the editor is rational, selective and critical (and everything else that is craft-like in writing). It is obvious that those two parts are not only both essential for writing effectively, but also must be in constant conflict with each other. [I do see that in myself, by the way. Whenever I'm writing something I just stop somewhere in the middle and start criticising and correcting instead of just finishing the scene and do the editing part later on]. The point is then, to try and keep the two apart while writing - write first and edit afterwards -, and that is also what I'm trying to work on, recently.
I think simply knowing about this fact already helps (or so I feel), but I do think I should need more practice.

By the way: Another point of advice in one of the books was not to read too much while writing because the style of the author influences your own one - which you need to find first, before improving it by the right kind of influence. I can see that even in this post... language seems somewhat old-fashioned... Whyever. ^^


---------------
Just another point: I do wonder how there can be sooo much truth in a book of about 70 pages...(and I'm not talking about the book on writing ^^).

[EDIT] And yes, this was another procrastination entry (though I wanted to cover the topic for quite some time). Case paper: 500/2500 words. Bah.

the_islander: (poet)
I found a great little program lately: yWriter Great, if you try to write a longer text and have a lot of - yet unconnected - chapters and scenes. ^^

The program allows you to create a (unlimited?) number of chapters and scenes, the later of which you can move freely between the chapters and (re-)arrange within a chapter as you like. ;-) You can also tag chapters and scenes by the characters that appear, make notes about the setting, time covered, perspective, status of completion and much more which I don't know yet. Best of all, you can also export your "work" as rtf, and even print individual passages/chapters/scenes if you like.

I just hope this gives my writing new speed and determination (this sentence sounds weird...).

At the moment I'm still busy typing up all the TdM scenes I wrote on paper (which I wanted to do anyway) and importing those I already have as text. I also need to translate some, since I wrote a lot in English lately and want to have two different versions, one German and one English. I do like my English ones better, though, especially the dialogues. Hmmm, problem. Needs to be solved soon, though. I'll just try translating them as precisely as possible without losing the atmosphere of the scene till I can find another solution.



PS: And yes, I do have a knack for alliterations in headings lately... ;-) 

[EDIT, 0.45] Finished typing up the scenes from my notebook just now, have to go on with the trillions of paperslips, single leaves and other notes tomorrow.

Word count: 

 
6805 / 220000 words. 3% done!

220000 words should be approximately 500 A4 pages, a good guess given that I think I will need at least 50 chapters a ~ 10 pages... Hm... I've got about another 1000 words in notes on paper somewhere. That's more than I thought, actually ;-)
the_islander: (Default)
Good question.

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