Friday, December 28, 2007

In the Middle of the Ni-igh-ight

I was up uber late last night. *yawn* After running errands that took us an hour from home and a late dinner out with Hubby, we rolled up the driveway well past 10. Then thoughts for a new writing project took over and I pounded the keyboard until around 1 a.m. (CST). I tried to call it a night and go to bed but I kept having to flip the lamp on (much to the chagrin of my husband) and scribble in my notebook.

This morning (around toasting some Strudels for the girls, helping the little one with her potty training, and convincing the big one NOT to give away her own Barbie toys for a cousin's late Christmas gift) I'm debating how far I want to go with my new idea...

For long pieces of work, fiction has always been my preference. My new idea is for a non-fiction book, of sorts, kind of a huge version of my column. Part of me thinks it's a genius idea, because the general topic (motherhood) is one I write about well, and the chapter/section ideas have been flowing out of me. And it's fun! It's something I feel excited over, as opposed to my WIP, which is still stagnate.

My concern is... will moving on to a new project help or hinder my novel's progress? As it sits now (sits, literally) nothing is happening with it. I'm 35,ooo words in, which is too much to scrap, but if I start something else entirely will I ever want to go back? On the other hand, what if miss out on the potential opportunity this new idea brings? And what if working on it gives me the rejuvenating boost I need to finish the novel?

My fear is that I'll turn into one of those writers who has grand, new ideas regularly but never completes a work. I guess I won't know until I try. And I think I'd rather work on something than nothing at all. Given that I can't just make myself work through my novel's dry spell, I guess I'll forge ahead with the new concept. I do have my smaller projects and goals, as well, that I know will keep my brain moving regardless. Hopefully once I get some of these new thoughts out I can reassess where I am with each project and take it from there.

Wish me luck!


Michele | aka Raw Juice Girl said...

Hmm... I'm not sure. It could go either way like you say. You might be inspired to finish the first by starting a second.

If your first work is a passion, a love, I personally think you'll go back and work on it. Don't you?

I think you should visit Rebecca, at The Writer's Round-About. She has written wonderful, informative series on writing novels. (Wade through her archives for sure!)You might ask her opinion :-) She's very nice!

Whatever you decide, I wish you the best!

Here's to a successful 2008!


Janna Leadbetter said...

Wow, thanks Michelle. Good words, and you're right: my first work is important to me. The characters are so real they're like family and I live in a setting much like what's in the book, so it's hard to get away from. I can't not see it finished. Thanks for reminding me of that. :)

...Has the post title made anyone else sing Billy Joel?

Melanie Hooyenga said...

Yes I'm singing the song, thank you very much.

I think if you're excited about the new project, start it. Nothing says you can't jump back & forth between the two. I mean how many people at AW do you see with multiple wip word counts in their signatures?

You seem to have momentum on this new idea so dive in while you're inspired. And like Michele said, you may find inspiration for the first. It's been proven that as soon as you stop thinking about a problem and move onto something else, the solution pops into your head clear as day, and this might hold true for your wip as well.

Good luck!

Janna Leadbetter said...

Thanks so much, Melanie! You're right, too. And I'm excited about it again, just after posted here and on AW! Amazing how that works.