Darlings and November Planning

So, after months and months—almost a full year—of procrastination, I finally did what I think is right for my writing.  I killed two of my darlings.  Two that I have been trying to write for almost four years now, and that for the past year, almost, have done me nothing good.  They’re never going to go anywhere, so they’re a distraction, and not even a good one.

I finally came to terms with that and let them go.  I’m going to write the two poor characters a happily ever after on Monday, and then I’ll move on.

I hope.  These two are hard to leave behind.  But I’m pretty sure this is what I need to do.

Meanwhile, on cheerier notes, I’m still working on the planning for my November NaNoNovel.  World-building is going pretty well.  Slow and painful, but as well as I’d expect.  My characters are also coming along quite nicely, though also fairly slowly.  Two of the four protagonists have almost-fully-developed personalities and have joined the herd of other characters that feel like they might be alive in my head.  The other two are…coming much more slowly.  My villain, too, is still mostly flat and lacking any personality, but I’m not too worried.  I have time.

I’ve also been working on a short story, both to help flesh out the backstory of one of the characters, and to keep myself writing until November.  Somebody told me this story is one of my best works so far, but I don’t really believe that it doesn’t need quite a bit of work.  I do agree it’s better than a lot of my other writing, though.  I’m trying to remind myself to properly describe things, and the short story is way more exciting than anything I’ve written.

For some reason, I never seem to have much action.  Just dialogue.  It’s kind of boring.  So this novel I’m planning, I want to be far more exciting.  There’s going to be sword-fights and…other cool stuff.  (I did say I’m not writing an outline, didn’t I? I’m not planning everything!)

My novel is basically a twist off of your stereotypical, “Prophesied Chosen One has to save the world from the ultimate evil”.  I thought it would be interesting if the oracles and prophecies were more everyday things, and how they’d affect things, and it basically turned into this world where the prophecies basically rule everything.  It’s also very interesting to see how the setting affects my characters’ motives and goals.  It’s actually fascinating to build this world, and I’m definitely very excited to write it this November.

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14 thoughts on “Darlings and November Planning

        1. No, no, I understand. A part of me is screaming the same response you are, too.

          The short answer is basically that they’re a huge distraction to my other writing. I keep trying to write their story, and I just waste time and words and nothing comes out. I’ve been trying this for three and a half years now, so I know that it isn’t going to change any time soon. There’s nothing left for them, except random scenes I put them into, and those, still, waste time and words. I get nothing out of them.

          So I need to put them aside and concentrate on characters who will actually go somewhere and improve my writing. Like this new story I’m working on. But trust me, it hurts to do this. Every time I think about it, my eyes tear up.

          (If you want the long answer, you’ll have to read my original post on the fruit thread. It’s too long to put here, though I could email it to you if you like.)

        2. Okay. *is trying desperately to calm down* I’ll find the post.

          But do you have to kill them off? Can’t you just say let them go off travelling around the world so you can focus on your other writing? And then by the time they come back their at least still alive?

          It’s just they feel like real people, the most real characters I know, and them dying would just be horrible and horrible for you and just nooooo.

          I’ll shut up now.

        3. It’s on like page eleven or something. You’ll know it when you see it.

          Oh, no, no! I’m not really killing them off! That’s just an expression. I’m giving them a happily ever after. There’s no way I could kill them off like that.

  1. Aww that’s always tough. Darn.

    But it sounds like your NaNovel should be pretty interesting! I’ll see how my new school schedule is going and I may join you in NaNoing 🙂

  2. Hey Ann,
    I’m sorry about your characters. I tried writing a murder mystery… It’s never easy killing off one of your babies. Even the bad ones!!

    I was wondering if I could request a post (or a few)? I was hoping you might share your world building tequnique and maybe another post for how you create your chapters and maybe another if you outline. I would love to see your process. I’m a planner and I love to learn other people’s ways of preparing their writing.

    I’m writing a few blogposts about my outlining process and would love to see your take!

    I hope you’re novel goes well. Do you know what word count you aiming for? Did you type it or did I miss it?

    -Jordan

    P.s. I don’t mean to sound inconsiderate about your characters. 😉 I just really want to see those posts!!

    1. Yeah…

      Hmm… I might. I kind of have the teensy problem in that I’m still figuring out what my process is, exactly, but I might be able to do something, if you like. Can’t guarantee it’ll be soon, though—school has been taking up every free moment of my time. And then some.

      I think I’m going to try for a goal of roughly 100k. It’s kind of a daunting number, mostly because my biggest project, so far, was only 84k, but I really want to try for this.

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