I figured for my post today I would keep with this week’s theme (this week’s theme being this WIP is kicking my ass from here to eternity and back).
I’m overwhelmed. This time, it’s not by the challenges of the WIP itself. It’s by the amount of information out there on what publishers/editors/agents want. Information that is so valuable, and wonderfully available for free by simply the click of a button. Information I immerse myself in hoping it helps me become a better writer and ups my chances of becoming a published author.
But sometimes… that information is a double-edged sword. Because sometimes, it makes you feel like you’re going to fail no matter what.
Somewhere in my many internet travels this week, I read a post by someone who said an editor for a line I am thinking about targeting said “No backstory within the first one hundred pages.”
My WIP is full of backstory. It’s something I’m worried about, something I know I’m going to have to change and tweak as I write, but at the same time… I can’t imagine not giving any backstory until the novel is halfway over. It would take away most of what makes my hero and heroine tick.
Then there’s the old Your hero and heroine should want opposing things–they should be pitted against each other in a way that no reader thinks it’s possible for them to work it out. I am always self-conscious about my conflict because I like realistic conflict and I don’t think realistic conflict is black and white. Realistic conflict is sometimes two people working together to achieve a goal and learning something in the process, but… is that what other people want to read? Is that what will get me published? Will my current conflict fall flat unless I am a household name?
There were a million more little stabs to my confidence over the course of the week. One tip says don’t start with this, another don’t start with that. No backstory. Descriptive Setting. Action! Action! Action!
I was down again, questioning again, wondering why I am doing this AGAIN. And then I got to the point where I realized the answer is… because I want to. I want to write this story. I believe in this story and my ability to write it. Will it be perfect? No. Will it take a long ass time to write? Probably. Will it sell? Anybody’s guess.
But bottom line, it’s the book I have to write. For me. And hopefully that translates into a book that will fit some publisher’s needs.
If not? On to the next.