Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Decision Time!

For the last couple of weeks, I've gone back and forth over which story to bring out in my next work.  Part of that has been laziness - I got out of the habit of writing on a regular basis, so just breaking the inertia has been a challenge.  However, I also had two interesting ideas in mind, and I didn't know which one to tackle first.
(Which would you choose?)
Well, I finally came to a decision - I'm going to go with my time travel story.  Now I realize that from a book blurb standpoint, the other story I had in mind sounds much more exciting since it was easier to describe in a paragraph.  However, I think that if I can refine my story well enough, that problem will be moot when I tackle this other one.  All of my stories start off nebulous to begin with, and they take a while to gel.  I know the general path of the book, so the devil is in the details.

Why did I choose a story that might be harder to refine than one with an easier plot line?  Very simply, it's because I have a more concrete vision of the main character.  I want to return to character driven fiction, like my first three books, and I just know thus guy better than the other person in the other storyline.  To me, that will make creating the mood both easier and more fun.

The character I have in mind is a scientist named John Forsythe.  He's brilliant, eccentric, and like most geniuses, very arrogant.  It's that arrogance when bounced off of the hopeless situation he'll find himself in that draws me the most towards the story.  I want to find out what he does in a world he can't control with his intellect or intimidate with his credentials.  It's very much a fish out of water story where the humbling of the protagonist will be key.

Of course, writing a character like this will be challenging as well as fun.  I have to bring out his conceit without turning the audience against him.  I'll have to show flashes of humanity in him that might've otherwise stayed hidden in his natural environment.  Can he adapt?  What does he do in response to human suffering?  What are his buttons?  I've got ideas on all these, but nothing is solid...yet.

This is a story I'll begin this week.  I wrote about 1,000 words, but I'm going to scrap that now(as painful as it will be) since there's a new direction.  I have a few events coming up where I think I can get some real progress made.  Hopefully I can have 25,000 words done by the end of the month.  Maybe I'll even post the first chapter once it's complete - we'll see.

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