After my post yesterday about resistance, I did start work on the first draft of my new book. As of now I am 1,326 words into the first chapter. My plan is to write the first act (which I already have a pretty concrete plan for) and then return to planning for the rest of the book.
I’m relieved to been working on it. A lot of the resistance I was feeling has been lifted and it seems like the right decision for this project.
That wasn’t what I wanted to write about today though.
Starting something new can be daunting. Quite often that manifests in the form of resistance, but there are more concrete challenges. With writing fiction, one thing that I come up against most often is awkwardness.
Writing fiction isn’t the same as planning fiction and it also isn’t the same as writing blog posts. It is unique. And when you haven’t done it for a little while, it can feel strange.
That’s how yesterday went. I found myself struggling to fit back into the tone of voice of fiction and the result is words that will almost certainly be completely rewritten. This happens a lot.
It’s one of the reasons why I try not to go too long between working on first drafts and, in the past when I had more time, I planned and edited separatly to writing so that I always had a first draft on the go. There are a lot of benefits to that approach and if I ever have more time again in the future then I will definitely go back to it.
There doesn’t seem to be any way to avoid this awkwardness. It’s not only due to leaving a gap between first drafts, it’s also because I’m writing about a new world with new characters and we aren’t familiar with one another yet. Over the next few days as I settle into the tone and get to know the characters, the awkwardness will fade away.
That’s not to say there won’t be other problems. As well as Resistance and Awkwardness, I have the Slump to look forward to. Usually that comes somewhere after the halfway point of the first draft when I will begin to doubt everything about the project.
For now though, I’m dealing with the awkwardness of starting something new. That’s what I have to focus getting past.