Thursday, March 03, 2005

That's it. I'm stalled on this book.

I could blame work related stress--not just amount of work to be done while facing deadlines, but also the close proximity of my Toxic F*cking Co-worker (an insecure, passive aggressive, cow b*tch). But that's another rant story, another blog.

I could also blame the fact that these characters/story did not 'come' to me, I sought them out. I wanted to prove I could write a "straight" contemporary romance. (Hah! This ms (idea) has turned into a bit more than that). I could also blame a certain amount of 'creativity sapping exhaustion. But, whatever the cause, the result is the same. I'll see what happens this week-end.

On another note, Emma Gads wrote about her dwindling interest in reading Historicals in a recent blog. She still loves them, but is much more picky about what she'll read. Monica Jackson also blogged about being bored with what's out there romance-wise. Both these ladies have put my feelings into words; and I noticed something else--with all the buzz that's been going around about porn/erotica/romantica, et al--while I love a really hot read (and write fairly hot myself), I'm becoming a bit bored with them too.

For the first time evah, that I can remember, I skipped a love scene in a book I’m reading. gasp!, It was the third (full) love scene in the book, the first one was very well-done, but I found it loooooooooong. It could have been half the length and I would’ve been happy and satisfied. The second (fully consummated) lovescene was a quickie up against the wall. I enjoyed it. Enough detail for me to get the seat-squirming gist, good use of emotion and sensation, nice length, good pacing. Over.

Futher to this, Alison Kent posted two versions of a love scene from a recent wip she's completed. The second (original) version was more explicit than the first, and most people who posted a response, loved it better, specifically because of the details. Yet I preferred the first (edited/ 'toned down') scene. It was just as hot (which was the point she was aiming for) but it worked better for me. My own imagination/words--or just plain 'reaction' to the scene was enough to fill in the details/words that suited me. There were some details/descriptions from the second scene that I would have liked to have in the first, but there were others that pulled me out of the scene a bit. (Not sure why, lord knows I'm no prude).

Just like Monica and Emma, I’m looking for that *little bit different*, *touch of uniqueness*, or promise and delivery of *the exceptional*, I guess. (this is not in reference to Alison’s excerpt, just in general). I think, in part, that 'difference' I seek has more to do with the display, or conveyance, of emotion, character voice, sensation, chang/growth, humor, and so many other things beyond ‘details’ and/or ‘length’ of scene.

Back to Odil & ZoĆ« (or maybe not back) I have to figure out what to do with this story, I don't want to walk away from it. I think it’s a really good story and I don’t want to let it go. At the very least I want to get the outline down, that if I do take a break, when it's time to come back, I'll know what my intentions were with the book. It could just be a matter of discipline and time….
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Patch said...

I stumbled upon your blog. Very interesting! Good luck with your writing!

Linda Winfree said...

There must be something in the air. I've started two books since January, stalled on both of them (have a full synopsis for one). I. Just. Can't. Write. Not sure what it is. Anyway, if you want to commiserate or perform ritual writer yoga in an attempt to draw out our respective Muses, you know where I am.

ma said...

Sorry to hear you're stalled. I ran aground last week, but tomorrow, I'm going to try to start it up again. Take a running start from the beginning of the book which I hope helps.

'I wanted to prove I could write a "straight" contemporary romance.'

What were you writing before? Just curious.

As for finding reading material, I seem to have migrated somewhat from contemporary to historical romance. The variety is nice. Although I realize a lot of people have already read Laura Kinsale!

Sheri Haynes said...

Stinks that your stuck. I've got two (actually three) in the works. I'm really close to finishing one but don't have the motivation to finishing it. So I'm diving into the other with a vengance.

And I hadn't realized it until reading your comment, but as much as I love historicals, I too, find myself not seeking them out. I've really been leaning more toward RS and Fantasy lately.

Jaye said...

Hey, Patch, thanks for dropping by. When I have a minute I'll give a peek at your blog. :-)

Linda, it almost feels that way. "I. Just. Can't. Write.", except it's more, I just can't think clear enough to write. And like Sheri, have No Motivation, to write for any length when I do get myself in the mind-set. :-P I'll bring the whine, you supply the cheese, I'll be right over. gg

Jorie, my first ms was supposed to be a BLAZE. It turned into a 600 page Single Title Contemporary. Then every single idea I started after I finished that one (thinking, okay, I write single title) became a dark paranormal series/mysteries, or had a suspense subplot, or a gothic feel or was such a hybrid I didn't know how I could market it to an unsuspecting editor/agent.

Sherri, I'm reading a lot of thriller/mysteries/horror lately. Perferably with some sort of romantic relationship (but that relationship doesn't have to be more than a hint to keep me happy.)

I hope we all pull out of this 'meh' productivity, ladies. :-)

Larissa said...

Definitely something in the air. I've stalled on the Brava novella I was working on, and the thing is 2/3rds done! Grr.

Good luck getting back up to speed!

Anonymous said...

Well if you've read my blog you know I'm stuck too. My astrology prone friend says something about Jupiter and Mars being in retrograde. I have NO idea what that means, but it doesn't sound good. LOL!

I find, for me, that straight contemporary romances are by far the hardest thing to write. I don't know why, but it seems to be the case.

I've also found myself skimming over love scenes in the hotter books lately.

I preferred Alison's first version of a love scene over her second. I thought it was more sensory oriented.

My reading and writing tastes seem to be changing. I'm finding that I am being drawn to horror romances and horror in general. Keep in mind, this is the first time I've ever grabbed these types of books. I have no idea why this is happening.

I think to break my cycle of 'stuckness' I'm going to start working on more than one manuscript at a time. I have to feel like I'm accomplishing something or I am going to lose it. Jordan

Anna Lucia said...

It's not just me!

And no, I'm not talking about the stuck-ness, although that fits, too!

I'm talking about the bored-with-romance thing. It's so strange, I can't get my head round what's wrong.

Sylvia Day said...

Ooh. I love the abs on the Truly Madly Viking cover. *drool*

Kat said...

I'm with Jordan.

I'm going to try and kick-butt my Muse into working. If she can't do one story, maybe I can scare her with 2. Or four.


Jaye said...

Larrissa, you're excused since you have REQESTED REVISIONS!!!!!!! to do. gg

Jordan, your post shows we're of like minds. :-) I was toying with the idea of working on something else *just for fun*. I can't actually work on to books simultaneously, one I'm deep into my characters it's hard/impossible to switch.

Anna, it could be that there a lot of okay *good* books out there, but it takes the reading of a real master, to sweep you away with the magic. And let's face it, there aren't alot of masters out there. It's that think I've heard agents/editors muttering about of late, that a lot of mss they're seeing are workmanlike, perfectly good premise, strong writing, etc., but the excitment is missing.

Yes, Sylvia, he is divine. The writer mentions several times in the book that the hero, Jorund Ericsson, resembles Kevin Sorbo (I assume in his Hercules days). ::waggles eyebrows::

Oh, no! Are you stuck again Kat? You did a bang up job with the synopsis of your new work. Maybe you should post on AR for a bit? Get the creative juices going?

Larissa said...

Heh. Well, NOW I have a good excuse, but I have no excuse for the entire MONTH before when I wasn't writing! LOL (Okay, I was sick for a good two weeks, but still...)

Amie Stuart said...

I could have SWORN I responded to this--or maybe I did via email LOL....but hugs I can empathise. I think for me bebopping back and forth between different things has hurt more than helped.

I did have a writing hump to get over but then I had to read TBGG....All I can say is TRY. Even if it's handwritten notes or character sketches. Write down your problem, repeatedly, also...I know I was really surprised when I realized I needed flashbacks because I've never done a lot of work with them but that's what FU needs!

Kat said...

Cece wrote - I think for me bebopping back and forth between different things has hurt more than helped.LMBO! I read the above as, "I think for me BEDhopping back and forth..." Ouch. Ice water thru nose...not a pretty thing in the morning!

(sigh) might have to give in and do something for AR. Don't suppose I'll have company?

Here's hoping its just some Spring Cleaning goin' on in our minds and once we get the cobwebs out, our Muses will be more than happy to Sing.

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