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motorcityxlove
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PostSubject: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 4:31 pm

Okay, so basically, I've been working on a novel for about 4 years now. I can never seem to get it going and keep it going. I think I've deleted and re-written it like 5 times at this point. One problem I have is motivation, I think. I know writing is never easy, but I can write fanfiction like nobody's business. I've done character profiles out the wazoo, so I know that my characters have depth. But for some reason, I can't get the story to go anywhere. I've read tons of writing advice articles, but nothing seems to help me, and it's frustrating. Here's some basic info; if anyone can help me t all, I'd appreciate it.

Title: Paper Hearts.

It centers around a group of friends that were once very close. All of them live in a different location now, because they went their separate ways about 5 years ago due to some kind of huge argument. (This is one of the problem I have: I can't think of what kind of argument would lead to the rift. All I know is that I don't want it to be over a girl). When my MC returns to town, he doesn't want anyone to know. Now, I had a side idea that he returned to town because his little sister died. She was loved by everyone in the group, and when my MC finds out that his sister committed suicide, it instantly raises a red flag because that's not something his sister would ever do. He finds a camera, a cell phone, and a flash drive, and after looking through it, realizes that his sister was part of a really bad world.

I'm not sure if I should go with that, or just have the story revolve around the huge argument they had and their subsequent reconciliation. I'm really confused and disenchanted, and I want to write but I just don't know what to do. Help!

 I love you , Tina
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RobinLeigh
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 6:50 pm

I can help here. One, maybe the argument was over a line someone crossed that they shouldn't have. Maybe they had a pact that they would never associate with a certain crowd, or that they'd never rat out someone for something they did, and then someone did just that. And the only one who wanted to fix things was the little sister.

Maybe the search to find out what happened to the little sister leads to the reconciliation. Side note, one of the friends should be closer to her than the others maybe?
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motorcityxlove
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:13 pm

I just didn't want it to be something cliche, like a fight over a girl. That's just not something I wanted to do. I was totally stuck on what I wanted it to be, but I wanted them to have a big argument, huge enough that the MC exiled himself and moved away. It's going to be a group of about 4 friends, and I was thinking that when the MC leaves, the rest of them stay close. The main female character dated the MC, so maybe when it happens, she feels torn between siding with him and siding with the rest of the group (her brother is one of the people in the group). So it puts her in a bad position.

One of them is going to be closer to the little sister than the others. I just haven't decided yet. I was thinking that they have to put their differences aside to find out what happens to the little sister, and in doing so, they realize that their argument was petty, and they begin to mend fences. The friendship isn't the same, but it's a start.

Still not sure about whether or not it should be a pact that was broken or someone ratting someone else out. Maybe one of them started hanging out with someone from a bad crowd or something, and the others found out and came together to try and make the person see reason? Or maybe the little sister was and one of them knew, and the MC got mad because he didn't think his little sister would do that?
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RobinLeigh
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:30 pm

I have an idea, I'm telling you over IM as we speak. I think if you do it this way, it'll work, and it'll make for a WAY more explosive story.
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:43 pm

You are a lifesaver. Thank you so much for taking my jumbled ideas and making sense of them. This is why we're sisters, and I'm so glad I could bounce this idea off of you.
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:46 pm

Anytime! That's what friends (and sisters!) are for. I hope now that the story uses you to bring itself to life--I think those are the best kind to write!
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:52 pm

The story was stuck in pre-development hell. I just couldn't get it off the ground, because I didn't have enough invested in the story. Now it's going a lot smoother. I can't wait to get started now!

Question: Do you write straight from the beginning, or do you skip around?
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:53 pm

Straight from the beginning. And I've learned that handwriting it in a notebook first helps me out so much. That way if I need to switch scenes around, I can do that as I'm typing, rather than copy and paste hell on a doc.
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:56 pm

I plot out in a notebook, then copy it over to Word. I type a lot faster than I can write, which is why I do that. Once I get started typing, I fly through the pages. But that's because I don't plan out in detail.

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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:59 pm

Yeah, my process is to write it out as it comes to me--and it's usually in a linear fashion, straight from the beginning--and then edit as I type. Works out much better for me that way. I've seen your process before though and it works GREAT for you. I envy your skill sometimes.
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PostSubject: Re: Writing advice   Wed Apr 23, 2014 10:17 pm

RobinLeigh wrote:
Yeah, my process is to write it out as it comes to me--and it's usually in a linear fashion, straight from the beginning--and then edit as I type.  Works out much better for me that way.  I've seen your process before though and it works GREAT for you.  I envy your skill sometimes.

Ideas come to me, but not always in a linear fashion. Sometimes I'll be writing and a quote comes to me, or a scene, so I write it down. I've found that I do better when I'm structured, but not too structured. If I get stuck on the beginning, I can skip ahead and write another scene, and then go back. It takes the pressure off of me. Aww, thank you!
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