Writing What You Enjoy

To me this is important. Very important as all of us tend to be guilty of the fact that we try to fit into the industry, and well after so much failed attempts or thinking that I just did not do a good job in truly writing my stories in the way I intended it to be. I decided that I should I write it in the way I enjoyed it.

Maybe it’s because I’m young, and I have a whole life ahead of me, and realising that I do have other interests and an ability to keep a day job, that I’m just considering writing serial fiction for the long term.

Because it is what suits me. I need constant novelty, and I do that when I work on two to three works with a serialized schedule. It allows me to look for fresh ideas, and slowly piece them together.

And well, it allows me to be able to truly go deep into the scope that I really want to. All my stories have large characters which don’t play an integral part at first, or many of them do so at different times. And I also like when the spotlight is shined on them or when they contribute a lot more to the plot. Or push it in a different way.

And with my final and probably seventh attempt at writing a novel, and realising that it just really isn’t the route for me. That story had a main character with four siblings, and the cast just grew, with each chapter that I wrote. That I saw that there was no way I could end the story in a single novel, or at least in any satisfying way while giving them the depth that I wanted to. Without making the novel way above the usual word count. I was hoping for seventy thousand, but at almost 50,000, the plot nowhere close, the characters not delved deep enough, I decided that well, maybe writing a novel is just not for me.

And after all this, I decided that why squeeze myself and force myself to write a story in the format that doesn’t suit what my vision of my ideas are. Or becomes a road of such misery for me, even the one novel I completed had been over 150,000 words. And if I tried to made it a novel, most of the characters will lose the depth that I given them, as I will have to cut a lot of scenes out. And even entire characters themselves.

So, I decided that I should just write for myself. Write what I enjoy, the way I want it to be, and the way I saw it. Do tell what you think on this subject matter. As it was something that I was thinking for a long time, but it was only now that I really felt that I should just do what I wanted to, not what the market expects.

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Should We Appeal To The Market or To Ourselves?

My answer is always to ourselves. Write what you want, write how you see the world. There is no one who can say whether your world is unrealistic, unless of course the people do not really face any consequences from their actions, nor any effects come from it.

And well, I dislike those who appeal to the market as it can change within a few years, the trends will change. Previously we saw a lot of paranormal books, these days it is tilting more to the superhero genre.

Most importantly, is that we as writers should be writing what we wished to read but never existed. To me, writing is personal. It is something like leaving a piece of your soul in your work, and that is how the work is original. As no one can ever copy the way you write things, the way you view things.

That is what I like stories which often explore a much more unique world, or take an already overdone idea and twist it in a way that makes it refreshing.

And right now, even when I’m asked to describe which genres my stories will fall into, I end up scratching my head. Because, it just doesn’t exactly seem to fit one. It stands out on its own.

That to me, is what writing is all about. Writing something that only you can write, and can make, but no one else.

And not copying the market, for I feel that there a lot of books which simply exists but have almost no meaning behind it. Those are the stories which I always forget when I read. As you can see quite often, that those books which sit upon the top of my list have something they wish to say, something that personally belongs as the words of the author. Or the worlds are unique to the author themselves.

Even those which don’t fall into having a meaning, a lot of them are entertaining and bring something new, a different an fresh kind of story as compared to others.

So, always write what you wish to see, write it in a way that you think is right. Don’t ever think that your work might be considered outlandish or unrealistic, just remember, it is always those works which leaves the biggest impressions in their minds.

What do you do to make sure that you’re writing what you want to write, and not what the market wants? Leave it in the comments below.

How Important Is Humor?

There are many series which I fell in love with just because of the jokes and the setting. Sometimes, when I simply want a break from all the seriousness I pick up something funny. Which I can simply laugh together with.

And they often remain my most memorable books. To the degree that I’m also considering adding a little more to my stories. Which sometimes grow a little too depressing, and heavy.

But humor is what makes me able to come back to a series and consistently rewatch it, rather than having the series be consistently quiet serious. Which at times I just take a long break.

For books, it is rather fine. Since I often read books which are released this year, and as a result I wait for nearly a year for my emotions to really come down and I can go back to the story again.

But humor is what allows me to enjoy the series as part of daily life, and I can also see why many manga and anime often incorporate them.

It is also something that forces me back into the world of my own creation more than ever, which is creating hilarious situations for my own characters to worm themselves out of. Or during periods when I just need more time to think something through, humor seems like a good avenue to go to.

And at the same time develops my character and exploits their quirks without ever trying to kill them.

And so, humor is important for me to enjoy a series and at the same time truly explore my character. I do not think that there is any character that di not have a funny side, or have a habit that isn’t.

Please leave comments below telling me what you think of this topic.

What Do I Always End Up Writing?

It is one of the few things which I never understand about myself is that most of my works will have sequels before I say goodbye to them. And some of them are very very long, and turn themselves into sagas.

And I have tried many many times to think of it as a single book. But usually because I want to explore the world more thoroughly, I always have sequels or at least books which have sequels on the cards.

Although I rarely read long series in the first place, with the exception of The Shadowhunters, most of what I read has never gone past five books, and yet I always end up writing more than that.

And a lot of my works border onto the region calling nearly impossible to publish unless I’m a long time best-selling author, or self publishing is really the only option.

I do have the feeling why I end up writing such large works may be due to strong anime influences where works can go on for over a decade before its runtime is over.

Or that I simply let my imagination run as wild as possible to the point that I have explored every inch of the world, and by the end of the series itself it is definite that I will never return to it.

But let me think what you think of this, it is something that for some strange or weird reason I can never seem to escape. And when I try to elude it, I merely go to back to it, although thankfully writing a shorter work than if I had just let myself loose.

And of course, let me know what your writing experience covers. There was a good reason why I really need competitions to push myself into writing short stories, and well, it’s largely because by the time I finished the idea, it was usually longer than a novel.

Fanfiction: What Do I think of it?

It is a large debacle if you were to ask me about fanfiction. Some are bad, but some are well thought out, full of depth and takes a whole new spin on the original work. And at the same time, giving the vibe that most will see.

So, I say that it is a place where newbies and even experienced writers can practice. I have a couple of fanfiction ideas lying around, but I never really get to them as I’m doing other things. Even when I do, it mostly remains unfinished.

But nonetheless, it is a form of practice which I do enjoy. As you need to really grasp the nuances and characteristics of each character, and make them look well rounded instead of being a caricature or flat character. And when you insert an original character, one needs far more skill to pull them off than many think. Since most fandoms do have a strong hatred for them, and many times they resemble perfect, flawless characters who have zero story to tell.

That can really improve your ability to do characterization through action, words and even mannerisms and appearances.

Or whether your story is logical. This is also very important, whether the actions of each character is the same as what is told about them and whether it is similar to canon.

As well as whether your plot makes sense or has holes all around. In fanfiction, you may not be the one who understands canon the best and there are still people who can help you. Original fiction, you’re completely on your own in this regard.

So you can say that fanfiction allows many a writer to grow, and a place to just learn their craft. There isn’t the same kind of pressure that comes with original fiction, and although I never treaded into this. I never really got the confidence that I understood the work enough to be able to post it online. But in the beginning, that was how it was. I wrote plenty of fanfiction which never saw the light of day. It was just fun.

Until of course, I figured out that I wanted to be a writer. Some of my works still sit around in Google drive, or Dropbox. But it was my roots and did help me to start writing, even if it was just that little bit before I made the transition to original fiction.

So, I say that it helps writers grow and it is a beginning. We don’t need to come up with our own worlds, but we need good plot and strong characterization to pull it off.

What do you think about this topic? Leave it down below so we can discuss.

Indecision

For me, I realise that I have been rewriting a lot of works or relooking into everything. Only one of them is complete, the other is quite closely so. But by that point, I figured where I should go. Although right now I’m a little less certain whether I will not just say that by the end I will find something new to improve on and start the work all over again.

But I’m just so unsure about whether I’m even heading the right way sometimes. Or whether I might just grow to be unsatisfied with it in a few months. Like I always end up doing with many of my works.

I rewrote a lot of stuff over these few years and many of my ideas have largely been elaborated or even changed.

Sometimes, I’m still not sure whether I should continue doing this.

But I think that sometimes it should be so. As some of this works even way back then, I knew I had to rewrite them. Or even edit them down to the core.

And for my other which wasn’t fully complete, it was something like a project which I thought up within two days. But it sounded pretty good to me. Also by the end of the draft, I did have an idea where I wanted to focus on.

As for my complete first draft, I had it left sitting for nearly four months. Although I spent some time reading and highlighting it, but I never made it beyond chapter four. When I returned to it, I had gone through a lot more and seen a lot more of ideas coming up. Some of which went to the work itself.

And now, when I’m going through a lot of editing and rewriting at the moment. I’m simply asking myself one question: is this a good decision? Or am I straying too far?

I really need some advice on this one, and well that’s why I’m writing this post.

How Important Is Pacing?

Pacing needs to be just right, there is something that we cannot deny. I have read and dropped many books due to poor pacing, such as reveals happening too late in the story or something. Which tells me that pacing is important.

The right kind of pacing does depend on the story. Here are some questions which I think can help with deciding the pace you’re moving at. And to decide whether a story might need revision.

#1 Is There Breathing Space?

It is extremely important for many books, you cannot have too many reveals at one go. Have a moment where the reader can take a break from the non stop action. There are plenty of ways to make the breathing space seem less like fluff, but ensure that there is enough space so that it does not overwhelm the reader.

#2 Is something happening?

Usually this applies to a book around the first half, since I have read books that seemed to have zero plot movement for the first half or moves at a snail’s pace. And then, there are authors who save everything for the last book in a series, creating what everyone calls middle book syndrome where almost nothing happens but setting things up.

Pacing doesn’t need to be fast, but it must be able to move and reveal certain things about the character or perhaps a certain development. Something has to happen otherwise why is it even a book if the main characters do not go through a journey.

#3 Are all the characters still the same?

For me, character development need not always be good. And also, they need not to have grown, but something must be revealed about them and changes them. It doesn’t always have to be their personality, perhaps their attitude towards a certain issue. Or perhaps their perspective.

Or if you tend to write characters who don’t grow but have plenty of depth, and different aspects to his character that just need time to be revealed.

If your character at the beginning is still the same person, without anything that gives them more depth, then I will say that it may need some work.

So overall, this is how I judge pacing of a story. However, do tell if you have another opinion.