Good people of the interwebs! love hearing from and interacting with all you writers and bibliophiles so much, I thought I’d ask your opinion. I graduated from college in June. During the last few months leading up to the end, I couldn’t wait to get back to working on finishing the first draft of my YA novel (I am more than halfway through the draft). But now that I’m graduated and free of school obligations, I find my attentions diverted elsewhere, to another writing project. You see, last summer I wrote a few pages of something. Just something. I didn’t really know where I was going with it, so it was ultimately put away into the figurative pile of “scraps of somethings”. And then in the fall, I started working on my YA novel, from a short story I’d written in high school. So, if you’re keeping score, I essentially shelved that scrap for my YA novel, got busy with school, and now that I’m free, it’s the scrap that’s demanding my attention. I think I’m a little bit stuck with my YA novel. Not very. Just not feeling very compelled to work on it. But I am very, very excited about that scrap, which has been popping back into my head as a bona fida novel-story.
And now I don’t know what to do. Should I press on with the YA novel? Or should I let the scrap have its turn for awhile? I don’t know if it’s just that I’m undisciplined, or have writer’s block, or what.

To add an extra stake, the central character of the scrap novel-story is a post-grad like me.

Also spellcheck wants to correct bonafida as Fibonacci. And I guess the word is not bonafida, bonafide. Spellcheck insists bonafide is actually debonair. Bonafide is also two words.There’s something wonderfully awesome in all of this sidetracking.

13 Comments on “In Which I Require Your Opinion

  1. It’s obvious really . . . start a different project that will distract you from the current conflict.

    Seriously . . . unless you have actual deadline for either project (contract, commissioned work, promise to a significant other), jump on whatever occupies your mind.

    I suspect the result will be better than forcing yourself to work on something to which you cannot apply your full attention. Then again, I’m not a writer; just a writer wannabe; take my advice with a lick of salt.

    • That is good advice though. Practical. I, of course, didn’t think to look at it from that standpoint! Thanks!

  2. Work on the Scrap… Work on what you are Passionate about… School, I’m sure, has supplied you with enough Rules for a life time… Follow your Heart… Follow your Passion… Work on the Scrap… If you get back to the YA Novel, then you get back to it… If you don’t, you don’t.

    Now that I think about it, when I was 10 or 11 I started Writing a Fantasy Novel, then put it down, as I was a Kid, and had Action Figures to play with, Lol

    But when I started pursuing Writing as a Career last August, at some point I created a Second Blog, and it was totally dedicated to that old childhood Idea… I started Writing it from scratch all over again, and it was going quite well.

    But, come November, I had an Inspiration for a New Fantasy Novel. I decided I’d put the old idea down for now, and Start My New Fantasy Novel this past January… I’ve now Written a Complete First Draft of the New Fantasy Novel… And my other Idea, which I like, sits gathering Dust… But I’m so excited about the New one that I finished, and have already started a sequel.

    Don’t over Regulate yourself… You are young, and you are free from school…

    It’s time to Start Spreading your Wings and Exploring in all ways… Including in Writing.

    Don’t worry about the old Novel… If you ever want to finish it, you will. Do the scrap, Lol

    Follow your Heart, I don’t think it’s a Discipline thing at all…

    You’re growing… Let yourself grow

    Nuff Said, Lol


  3. I agree with everyone else. I think you should set your curent project aside and work on the scrap project. Who knows, it might give you ideas for the YA novel.

  4. It definitely seems like you’re more interested in the scrap right now. And if you are, I think you should go for it! The best writing comes (I think) when you’re passionate about what you’re doing, not when you’re being responsible and writing what you think you “should.” Plus, the fact that you’re currently a post-grad will help you get a better feel for your character.

    But don’t just listen to me. Trust your gut!

  5. I would say that if you know you are the type of person who will finish what she started, even if it takes a while, the you should go wild with the scrap. If you are like me and have a tendency to jump from thing to thing like a puppy with ADD and never finish any of them, best to stick it out with the YA novel. I’m not a writer, so that might be bad advice, but that’s what I’ve learned as a visual artist.

    Or in other words, go with your gut. You know better than any of us do.

  6. I can totally relate. Here’s what I think: work on what you’re interested in right now. If you have ideas flowing like crazy related to the “scrap”, then write that one. It’s “telling” you to write it, so do it. If you don’t and instead work on your other project, you will just be distracted thinking about the other project that you might end up not doing a good job on your current project. Whew.

    Work on what is calling you right now. Sometimes things write themselves. I think “scrap” wants to do just that. πŸ˜‰

    • Thanks! That’s kind of what I’ve been feeling lately, but have been waffling whether it was the right thing to do or not.

  7. Go with whatever project seems more doable at the moment. If it’s the scrap, stick with the scrap. They are both your own work and who knows, maybe the scrap will turn out to be something of more substance. It has happened to a lot of authors.

    Having something to say is an important part of being an author. At this moment in time you are very close to the main character of that piece. Place your novel on the back burner for a bit. It can’t hurt.

  8. Definitely go with the scrap for a little while, see where it takes you. You might find it takes you to places which will help you come back to your other work with a different perspective, with fresh eyes. I have left stories to sit for long periods of time before, and very often it’s actually a good thing, once you get past that niggling guilt you can sometimes have from it. πŸ™‚

  9. Work on the scrap. Unless you have a deadline and will lose money, work on what’s got your attention at the moment. When I write, for what it’s worth, if it starts to feel like I’m forcing something onto paper/screen, it won’t read as good as it could. So take a break from editing, in part because it’s editing – which I find dull, lol – and writing. When you get to a stuck point on the scrap, go back to the YA.

    That’s my humble opinion, for what it’s worth. πŸ™‚

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