My idea for this blog was to chronicle the (difficult, unpredictable, frustrating) process of writing a book. From beginning to end, whatever end there may be.
And I thought that following the actual development of an idea into a book, through all the twists and turns of that process, would be worthwhile. People ask authors “Where do you get your ideas?” But I want to ask, “How do you get from idea to book?”
In that vein, I started writing what I called the “From Idea to Draft” series of posts, but I had the foresight not to start posting it yet. And lucky that I did, because the idea(s) I was working on soon fell victim to my particular cyclical process of nothingness. So I started another series, and that too… is struggling.
I will write a “From Idea to Draft” series that actually gets to the draft… soon. But I’m wondering now whether it’s worth posting the stuff I’ve already written about developing those ideas. Sure, I didn’t get near a draft, so it’s not really a good guide for finishing a story—but I think there’s some interesting stuff about working with an idea to develop its details.
So I think that I will soon start posting the “Developing Ideas” series, which will detail my efforts to develop stories out of ideas… that eventually fail. But there may be little bits of goodness there that might be helpful to someone, or just to me later on.
For any “advice” that I deliver here, I always add several words of caution. First, that I have never actually successfully followed my own advice, so clearly I have no idea what I’m talking about and I’m a puffed-up windbag… that’s going to keep posting advice because… I am. Second, that if anything I “suggest” clashes with what you want to do and how you want to write, DON’T LISTEN TO ME. And third, that I’m still finding my way, I’m still changing my mind, I’m still trying to figure things out—so what I write one day may be contradicted by what I write the next. If that annoys you or feels unhelpful, then obviously you are free to disregard.
And I’m still figuring out this whole blogging thing—suggestions, comments, and criticism are always welcome. 🙂