Thoughts On Writing

Welcome to my introduction to this new series. In these posts, I’m going to be giving updates on my current writing projects, as well as diving into the things I’m learning both about writing and the publishing industry. 

I’m currently in the final phase of my MA in Creative Writing. So over the next few months, I’m pushing hard to finish the first draft of my current work-in-progress Heartsong. I’m submitting the first 15,000 words for my dissertation, but I’m writing the rest just for me. For the satisfaction of finishing, even though it will need a lot of editing before it’s really finished. 

Heartsong is a YA dystopian novel, but I also write across the rest of the speculative genre. Most of my work is inspired by real historical events/figures, or myths and legends. I love fantasy, historical fiction, dystopia, and science fiction as well. As you can see from the rest of this blog, I read across a lot of different genres. I like to think this means I’m incorporating lots of different influences into my own work. 

As for my future plans, I’m hoping to start querying agents next year, possibly with Heartsong. I’m interested in both traditional publishing and self-publishing, as I think both are valid paths, and both have their strengths and weaknesses. Different genres need different approaches, and what works for some may not work for another. So I’ll be exploring all the different options in these posts, just based on what has inspired me that week, or what I’ve been learning. 

I’m also going to be talking about short stories and poetry a little too, as these are both mediums I sometimes work in. I’m hoping to write more short stories and explore the options for publishing them, such as in literary magazines and journals. The same for poetry, though I currently intend to look at a self-publishing route for poetry. I think what I write is perhaps more suited to that option. 

So what have I written this week?

I haven’t written much this past week as it’s been a busy time for me (and just far too hot). Last Monday I did make some edits to chapter 7 of Heartsong. I was trying to figure out how ‘dystopian’ I want my world to be. How can I strike the balance between making the reader feel like this could happen in our world, and showing just how bad things have become? It’s something I think I’ll continue to struggle with and explore throughout working on this novel. 

I also wrote chapter 8 on Wednesday. I thought it was going to be a short chapter. But as I was writing, I realised I needed an extra scene to fill in a gap in one of the storylines. I’m currently in the middle of act 2 (I use the Save the Cat Writes a Novel beat sheet split into 4 acts instead of 3), so I’m heading towards the midpoint. All the different plots are beginning to move along now, feeling less like setup and more like I’m telling a story. Which makes me feel better about the process. 

Plans for next week

This next week I’m hoping to write chapters 9, 10, and 11. I’ve currently set myself a deadline of 7th August to get this book written, which means three chapters a week. I’m trying not to focus on word count as much as chapters. I’ve found in the past that word counts can distract me from the actual writing.

I’ll also be starting CampNaNoWriMo next week as well, and I’ve set myself quite a lofty goal of 50,000 words.

So that’s about it for this week, I think. A relatively short introduction to what I’m writing, and what my plans are for this series of blog posts. 

Do you like to focus on word count? Or another method of tracking? Let me know in the comments below. 

I’ll see you next week, 

V. 

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