Friday, March 30, 2007

Being enigmatic...

... Is NOT what I do best.

But Nic, the deadline is now one day and counting...

Can YOU really not guess what it is?

Perhaps you should ask your pupils...


JJ said...


I've just popped over from Kate's blog, after I was reading your news at coffee time.

I was interested in your comment about your friends saying you had too many characters... I'm a first timer to this process - well first timer in getting this far - have you got any advice on this? How many is too many? Maybe it's a bit dumb of me to ask you if your friends are saying this, but any feedback would be appreciated.

JJ at Tea Stains

Jane Henry said...

Hi JJ,

Nice to see you here.

As I'm starting out I've done a fairly typical thing of shoving all the back story into the first three chapters. I've done it before and I think it is quite a common thing for writers to do in first drafts. Because I am introducing everyone I've put in lots of minor characters who won't feature much, but are there as background. In revising it, I've already got rid of several. So I think that's what my friend means.

I think like anything in writing, you have to find a method that works best for you, but I seem to need to a) plot quite comprehensively and b) go over and over the beginning obsessively before I can move on to the rest of the story c) Once I've got the beginning right it does seem to flow better.

But that's just me.

My first (and quite rightly unpublished novel) was written after my second baby was born and in between bouts of freelancing. I didn't plot it at all and tried the into the mists approach. It was a total disaster for me and I ended up with a very saggy middle!! It took four gos to get it to some reasonable shape, and though I got an agent out of it it has yet to see the light of day (though I have thought of a way to resuscitate it).

Incidentally Stephen King (who is one of my literary heroes) favours the into the mists approach and thinks plotters aren't proper writers!

In my case, he maybe right. I can get a bit anal about it all...

love Janex

Mad Twin said...

I didn't pick it up yesterday reading in a hurry but the letters D & W spring to mind. And yes you are sad to be postponing your dinner guests

See you behind the sofa


Anonymous said...

Well Maniacmum,

front rooms had a spring clean, pizza delivery number by the phone at the ready, for 5.45 order.

Which will give enough time to plop on plates, then get a good seat .

Only hours to go,





Nic said...

I realised as soon as I'd pressed publish, but then my *@$£* PC wouldn't let me post again! (It really doesn't like New Blogger, I feel, keeps getting run time errors)

The REALLY silly thing is, I've been wittering on to A about it INCESSENTLY, and telling him that I *DON'T CARE* that his parents are up, we WILL be back in the house in good time and he is making tea...