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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Hatrack Groups » NSG 5/18 - 5/24

   
Author Topic: NSG 5/18 - 5/24
WBSchmidt
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Member # 8533

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Welcome to this week's Novel Support Group (NSG). Anyone can join. If you're new, tell us a bit about who you are and what project you are working on. Feel free to update the NSG Work in Progress thread with your current projects. Although we can report on any number of things, here is a list of suggestions (suggestions welcomed).

  • What were your goals last week and did you accomplish them?
  • Describe what you worked on.
  • Set goals for next week.
  • Did you learn something during this week?

Here is a list of things that you can do each week as we work on our novels (suggestions welcomed).

  • Writing on a novel
  • Characterization
  • World Building
  • Relevant research

=-=-=-=-=

Last Week's Goals

More laziness; no writing. I still need to move programs to the new computer. However, I have been thinking about the writing research I'll be doing so I guess I did something. [Smile]

My goals for next week:

  • More Article Writing

More article research / learning.

What did I learn this week?

Now that I've decided to focus on setting first, I thought I would dive right in and begin studying and world building the settings for my world. However, I quickly realized it is more complicated. As I stated last time, characters are highly influenced by their environment. I feel that setting has many layers that influence one another. These layers can be high level settings such as the level of technology you have (from Stone Age to Space Age) or can be as detailed as what clothes the characters wear. However, you cannot determine what clothes your characters wear until you determine the level of technology. However, simply deciding on a level of technology is not enough.

The next thing decision I came across was the type of cultures I wanted to include. Here I have several decisions to make. Do I create a culture similar to the stories I read growing up and use that familiarity to draw in readers for the nostalgia? Do I create use a culture different than the typical fantasy and use the sense of wonder to draw in readers? Do I create a mono-culture society or I create many cultures and draw use that opportunity to increase conflict between the peoples? Everyone's answer will be different and will be based upon the writer's goals and writing skill level. For example, creating a world with many non-typical cultures will be more difficult to write than using a single culture similar to what has been written before. Juggling multiple societies will be more difficult and I need to decide whether I have the skills to do that.

I see many other aspects of setting that I need to research and study that go well beyond the cultures. However, the cultures I decide to use will help determine what other aspects of setting I can add. It will be an interesting time researching various cultures.

--William

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Meredith
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Last Week's Goals:

MAGIC'S FOOL: Figure out what changes I need to make to improve this story.
Not yet. [Frown]

FIRE AND EARTH (formerly known as SEVEN STARS): Two more queries out this week.
Actually, I sent three. [Smile]

BLOOD WILL TELL: The hard part (for me)--marketing. This week, I may have to force myself to try twitter.
I did sign up for twitter, but I haven't made a lot of progress on this, yet. [Smile]

BLOOD IS THICKER: Let it rest.
Easy one. [Smile]

MAGIC'S APPRENTICE: Still on the back burner now, for when I get temporarily stuck on THE BARD'S GIFT.
Another easy one. [Smile]

THE BARD'S GIFT: It's started. It's beginning to build momentum. Through Chapter 5 this week.
No. Real life intervened. I've started Chapter 4, though. [Smile]

OTHER:
Update my blog twice a week.
Yes. [Smile]

Next Week's Goals:

MAGIC'S FOOL:
Figure out what changes I need to make to improve this story.

FIRE AND EARTH (formerly known as SEVEN STARS):
Two more queries out this week.

BLOOD WILL TELL:
The hard part (for me)--marketing.

BLOOD IS THICKER:
Let it rest.

MAGIC'S APPRENTICE:
Still on the back burner now, for when I get temporarily stuck on THE BARD'S GIFT.

THE BARD'S GIFT:
Recapture the momentum. Get through Chapter 6.

OTHER:
Update my blog twice a week.

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LDWriter2
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Hmm, I skipped last week.

I worked on:

"Angel Kin"
My MC went out for a night of dancing at a country bar. I decided to throw her a curve but it was me that went on two side trips. A woman made a pass at her while she was resting between dances. At first I thought she would have a stereotypical type of reaction get nervous and leave but then I thought whoa how would she react? I ended up with her chatting with the woman and ignoring the pass. But I'm not totally sure about that reaction either.

My second "trip" is related. After dancing she went home alone. I hadn't planned this but as she got ready for bed she became thoughtful. Why was she alone? She had decided to stay a virgin for two reasons having nothing to do with other than the usual reasons but with emotional baggage she carries. Because of one reason she hardly ever goes out with guys. She likes to dance with guys, she will chat with guys but either ignores their passes or tells them to get lose. But its been a few years and she has to rethink that position. Is it just out of habit or does she feel like the reasons are still valid.This turned into a serious internal discussion on her personality which is still going on. How do I see her deep down inside? I do know I will have to go back and add to that thinking scene. I didn't do it very well.

Also solved a problem of getting her to the outskirts of town for another session with her stalker-mentor and a fight.


"Stone Within"
I really wish I could work on this one more. I don't know why but there's something that draws me to it. I still don't know half of what is going to happen. I need to add a character or two I know. Stone needs a cop friend--maybe a female one-- that is on a special unit for dealing with paranorms. Plus she needs a mentor or some type of adviser who may not be human.

Anyway, She is in the middle of a fight with a beast. Her homeless friend will show up and maybe that officer friend.


Two Struggles"
Hey finished chapter one so went back to chapter four and finished it. That leaves me with seven chapters to redo. The last one, maybe last two, have been redone already so hopefully they will go quick. I do have something to change in that final scene with the bad guy but it won't take long.

I have two people who will read Chapter one. If I can get around to spellchecking it and proofreading it.

My goals are to keep working on all three. Maybe spellcheck that First Chapter.


What did I learn, nothing new. Just to keep plugging away at what I know and to keep thinking about and working on certain techniques so they become part of my writing style.

[ May 19, 2012, 06:49 PM: Message edited by: LDWriter2 ]

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Crank
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LAST WEEK'S GOALS
Metzgerhund Retreat
What I said: I want to finish that one story that didn’t get finished last week. Also…I’ll up my new word count to 4K.
What actually happened: I managed to pole vault over the 4K mark. But, because of that focus on new material, I didn’t finish the story I wanted to finish. Grade: Success-minus

(mainstream novel)
What I said: At the very least, I will read what I have so far and make sure the order of events is solid before I go any further. My bonus grade will come from making adjustments to the story based on my clearer picture of the characters.
What actually happened: Last week’s goal for my mainstream story took a weird turn. This week's goal did the same. I didn’t read a single note of the current manuscript, but I did jot down a few potential new plot twists that have been rattling around in my mind for a while. Grade: Round-about Success

THIS WEEK'S GOALS
Metzgerhund Retreat: I want to finish that one story that didn’t get finished last week. This is a recording. Oh…and another 4K new words is on the agenda, too.

(mainstream novel): I think I’ll attempt something different this time…like, actually read the current manuscript.

S!

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EmilyS
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Less productive than I hoped last week due to fighting off a migraine, but I guess I technically met my goals. Finished the second workshop critique, and made some forward progress plotting North.

Next week I need to work on my elevator pitches (just in case), and continue pre-writing for North. Then Friday is BayCon!

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