Wednesday, October 5, 2011

IWSG: Insecure Writer's Support Group

Please remember to sign up for Darkspell Launch Spookfesta party for October 31st here--coolawesome prizes!

I am a pantser.

Whew! I've finally gotten that off my chest! I've written over 8 standalone novels. Suddenly, one of them was nabbed and releases Halloween!

I've struggled over the sequel because I have the pressure of having to be "better" than the first--more exciting. You know, the sequel blues? I have several elements from the first book of Darkspell that I could easily extend, but it's been a fair struggle finding it.

The pantser muse in me is having a blast with the sequel, but the logical editor in me is biting her nails as we both collide!

Something I have to realize and understand is that the first draft is just that, the first draft. It's so hard to separate the two--especially with the sequel because there's more riding on this than the first book.

Alex gave a simple 3 question guideline:

- Who do you want your characters to be when the story begins?
- What theme do you want to follow?
- What do you readers want?

I must confess that I'd have to guess at the last question since Darkspell has yet to make its debut!

Do you agree with me? How do you deal with the pressure of expectation from fans, making the story arc that much more impressive--yet not so farfetched so as to feel forced . . . fake?

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  1. I honestly can't imagine the pressure. It sounds like you're handling it, though.

  2. Well I can only imagine the pressure but I just know your sequel will be as amazing as your debut!! Yay! Take care

  3. Ha, no shame in being a pantser (although I'm 80% a plotter and 20% pantser). I can IMAGINE the pressure of a follow-up novel, a sequel! But don't worry too hard; if people loved the first one, they'll usually love the elements of the second one. :)

  4. Hi Elizabeth! I've checked out your blog a couple of times after reading about you on Alex's blog. I, too, am a member of Alex's IWSG and am now a follower of yours!

    Your post today is quite similar to mine. While I'm not yet agented or published, I am busy querying for my first novel while beginning my second, and I have the same insecurities as you do though for different reasons. So I feel your pain and I sympathize. Mine next story is not a sequel so I have to come up with a totally different premise with new and original characters. I'm finding that challenging this time around.

    As for being a pantster, well, all I can say is that I'm a bit jealous that you have that talent, that skill to just write away and see where it all leads you. One of the reasons I'm feeling a bit stuck is that I only seem to be able to work with a clear idea of where my story is going, and I do that using an outline. No outline, no progress. *sigh*

    I say, revel in your inner pantster! She's obviously already led you down the path to success.

  5. I admire anyone who can just wing it! I have to plot every detail. When you start hearing back from reviewers and early readers, you'll have an answer to that last one.

  6. I guess you need to know your intended audience to get a general idea about what they expect, but then again sometimes it's a real mystery trying to second guess what will click with readers. If it works well for you then your probably off to a good start.
    You got some excitement ahead of you.

    Tossing It Out

  7. never written a sequel, so wouldn't know the pressure... but do know about writing the second book, and do know that pressure! lol yeah, there's a lot of "this better be better than the first one" stuff.... and while writing it i often think its not going to be, but then everyone gets better the more they write and ive found that by simply pushing through it and getting to the end it turns out all right

    "Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do."

    -Steve Jobs

  8. I can't answer 2nd because I had written the 2nd befor I published 1st but I have had the insuecurity with the 3rd - how to keep the story going ,fresh and offering something new - i have really struggled this year and still not sure and guess I wont until it's read by those who have read the first two

    I suspect its just insecurity and that you'll be fine and I'm hoping I will be as well - we'll hold each other's hands - fingers crossed


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