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 Meta: Let's Write About Writing!

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Pyramidal Crystal

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Pyramidal Crystal

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PostSubject: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   25th September 2011, 3:00 am

SO! Being the nosy little git that I am, I've been wondering about you guys and your relationships to writing, whether fandom or original. How do you write, what do you like to write, is it the same as what you like to read or something completely different, why do you like to write?

General & theoretical or very specific mechanics of your writing process, it's all good. (For example: I always want to know how people come up with titles. It's something that I'm pretty bad at, & I almost always end up using fragments song text/poetry text OR an individual word, the latter generally in desperation. There is that vague sense that Other People Have Better Titles, but that may just come from not having had to personally fight to find the damn thing.)



I'll throw up a few things about me & writing:



- I write both fanfiction and original fiction. I don't write poetry, but I think my writing may have something of a connection to poetry in that I have a very distinctive rhythm to my language (anonymous fic exchanges are something I've done in the past and it's always kind of laughable - everyone can identify my fic in about ten seconds).

- Following from that, rhythm in writing is super-important to me. I'm sensitive to it as though it was music.

- It's just as well I have rhythm, because my actual language is very scaled-back. I write in a relatively minimalistic way, I think, and tend towards telling even longer stories as a series of snapshots. I've been told that my writing can have a lot of atmosphere anyway, and I think that the minimalism works with the rhythm to give a sense of other things happening below the surface. Basically, my writing is almost ridiculously subtle and full of undercurrents and things left unspoken.

- In fandom, writing is my main way of engaging with a series (or whatever) that I'm fannish about. I use it to build up my ideas about characters, to test if my ideas hold, and usually as my main way of engaging with other fans (which is making this whole being-on-a-forum thing a big change for me, yeah!). I do also write meta, but my first line of attack is almost always to talk about a series in terms of possible fic and to sit down and write more stories around the canon. This is to the point where I actually have a hard time holding myself attached to a fandom in any active kind of way if I don't get to both write and read fic. (Because even fic that I don't like is input, and is actually really useful in that I have to pick apart what it is that didn't work for me and how I think it should have gone. And fic that I do like holds my enthusiasm levels way up there.)

- Outside of fandom and by accident in fandom my writing is generally exploring things I have trouble getting to grips with otherwise. I work through my own world-view by writing stories, basically, and things I'm afraid of, and things I'm uncertain about.
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Zaithat
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   25th September 2011, 1:26 pm

Let's see, I don't really have much of a "process" for how I write. And really, I don't change much when I write for academia or for fiction. Usually I just sit down and start to write, only pausing when I need to find something out. I don't outline my works, they usually just write on their own. I guess I'm trying to say that I free write a lot.

Titles usually just. . . come to me, otherwise I have to stare at the idea and see if there's something clever that I can use for it. I usually love how other people title their work and wish I had the ability. Granted, I am also usually a bit jealous about how well people can outline and stick to their outlines. I have a tendency to just ramble and let the writing take a life of its own.

Mostly, when I write, I tend to get to the point and get on with it. I have a hard time writing descriptions or spending too long on a topic. I had a teacher who hated redundancy in writing, and I believe her lessons stuck with me. Also, I am a very poor visual thinker, so trying to take an image and put it on paper doesn't always work for me. I like a lot of character driven pieces when I write, and most of my writing is either character interactions, or dialogue.

I write both fanfiction and original stuff. I have been a bit. . . blank creatively so I haven't done a lot of writing beyond RP'ing with a friend for the past few years. Now though, I'm getting a lot of ideas for fanfiction, but I'm hoping that soon that will branch out for original work again. I tend to write a lot of supernatural or magic works. I like fantasy, but I don't spending most of my time world building (there's too much planning for that). Probably my favorite topic currently has been re-imagining different fairy tales. One of the stories I have done with that is currently my favorite story I have written. I also have one story that I wish I could keep working on that would have been a magical girl story.
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SeleneHime
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   26th September 2011, 8:02 am

Oh, this is a nice thread to have. Can we sticky this?

Crash course about me and writing of all forms:

* I've been writing for about five years now, and in that time I've had lots of different people critique me in different ways. Despite that, though, some of my early critiques I still reference because of such sound advice.

* I started out writing fanfiction, and ever since then, I've been swamped with ideas for both fandom and original works. I tend to have trouble finishing my full stories because of having so many ideas at once, even though I write the ideas down when they come up. (I currently have about 60 different ideas I would like to write.)

* Although I mainly write prose, I do dabble in poetry, and apparently people certainly enjoy it enough to publish it. (Yay, XD.) I also dabble in the lyrical part of song writing, since reading music notes is more or less Greek to me.

* My favorite genre, and the main one that encompasses most of my works, is Fantasy. Granted, I tend to mix and match genres and sub-genres, but I do my utmost to make my work both original and enrapturing. Over the past year, though, I've had a lot of ideas that take a darker spin on things. (Never been able to write a light and fluffy chapter story, though.)

* I'm a very descriptive and character-centered writer. When I first started writing, I was told to "paint the scene, make the reader feel as if they are there". Although patching up my regular description, and not just having my combat description bleed into it took a little while, it's had a lasting effect on the consistent quality of my writing. More and more, people that like it seem to grow. And being that characters are the most important part of any story, I focus a lot on their development. To me, "character-driven" and "plot-driven" are really almost the same thing. Without the characters, you wouldn't even have a plot. It's human (per se) intervention that makes the story.

* When it comes to titles, I can usually think up a good one on a dime. But sometimes, it takes me a while. When I start having trouble, I look at my basic (or if it has already advanced, in-depth) idea and the characters for ideas.

* Oh, I'm also a chronic planner now. Not necessarily every little loophole in the plot and what happens, since it's still nice when your characters surprise you, but most of my writing takes place in original settings. Meaning I do tons of world-building, and in doing so, I get surprises about what else is going to happen in the story. It's fantastic.
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   26th September 2011, 9:36 am

I was just going to ask about planning, actually. I am, to put it bluntly, not a planner. I'm very intuitive in my writing, I think, and because I don't write super plot-heavy stories in the majority of cases it is maybe slightly less important? I work in emotional arcs and develop them by feel. I mean - I understand what you're saying about character development and plot being almost the same, but I do think that a lot of what I write wouldn't be understood to have much of a plot at all by a lot of people.
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Chmia
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   11th October 2011, 8:37 am

When you all were in elementary school, did you ever have to write a sentence for each vocabulary word? Well, I deviated from the assignment by always using the vocabulary words in a story, rather than a string of unrelated sentences with one vocabulary word per sentence. From there, I began participating in online, written RPGs when I was a pre-teen and this trend continued until fairly recently. Not only did RPGs help my writing skills, but my typing skills are amazing. As I grew older, I participated in more and more demanding RPGs. At about the same age, I began to write fan-fiction, none of which I have copies of. I also had a very active imagination when I was younger. In order to help me go to sleep, I would imagine a story (centered around my original characters Tobias and Gochi) and continue the story where I left off every night until I fell asleep. Thankfully, I fall asleep more easily as an adult, but I still do this after watching a scary movie or after waking up from a nightmare.

I read a lot of character-driven fan fiction, which I use to further understand characterization. Most of my characterization is built upon illuminating fan fiction, rather than canon. I highly believe in sticking to canon for the plot and understanding of the story, but I also believe that fan fiction allows the writer/reader to more deeply explore characterization and loopholes.

I have a difficult time completing fan fiction, which is why I have recently adopted detailed outlines. If I complete a detailed outline, than I am fairly confident that I can complete a fan fiction. Also, I actually know where my story will go and how I will get there! I'm currently working on a Sailor Moon epic, which is on ff.net (and media miner, but they have way too many problems right now. I might delete my account on media miner.)

Oh, I can also pull an A paper out of my butt, but that doesn't help me too much with fan fiction. Oh, I also beta-read on ff.net. I enjoy it.

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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   11th October 2011, 8:55 am

@Chmia wrote:
I read a lot of character-driven fan fiction, which I use to further understand characterization. Most of my characterization is built upon illuminating fan fiction, rather than canon. I highly believe in sticking to canon for the plot and understanding of the story, but I also believe that fan fiction allows the writer/reader to more deeply explore characterization and loopholes.

Yesss! I mean, I am also a firm believer in AU for example, but it has to keep something of the feel of the canon - what it is that it keeps I'm extremely flexible about. I love taking canon as a starting point and seeing how far I can twist and still have it work, you know?

Plus, yeah, lots of character-driven fic. The best stories really are the ones that make me go "I'd never thought of that! BUT THAT'S TOTALLY HOW IT IS!"
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SeleneHime
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   31st October 2011, 3:55 pm

National Novel Writing Month starts tomorrow. Is anyone else participating?

  • What are you writing about this year?
  • What is
    your daily word count goal?
  • Do you frequent the actual NaNo forums, or
    do you fly solo?
  • What genre and audience are your targets?
  • Do you think you can make 50k?


What are you writing about this year?
My NaNo project is actually a rewrite for my first go-around with this
contest. The fannovel I'm tackling left off at 33k on the original draft
almost three years ago, and I physically worked on it for two years
prior. It's a Legend of Zelda fannovel, which has gained five ...
almost six years of headcanon to go with the game canon. That headcanon
will greatly influence my storyline, or as I've grown to call the
setting since so much of it has had gaps filled in by my own work;
CLC-verse.

What is your daily word count goal?
Because my grandparents will be practically moving in around the 15th or so,
and I have no idea how long they're staying this year, I'm going to take
a big bite out of my word count in the first week.

Day One: 5k
Day Two: 3k
Day Three & On: 2k per day.

Do you frequent the actual NaNo forums, or do you fly solo?
I do go there about once a day lately in the past month, and post a few times.

What genre and audience are your targets?
Let's see ...

Main Genre: Fantasy
Sub-Genres: Adventure, Suspense, Romance/Friendship

My
target audience is from the age bracket 15 and up, although I hate
dumbing down my writing. So, I don't. I know that teenagers are
intelligent enough to read adult material (as I have since I was
twelve), so why bother?

Do you think you can make 50k?
Well,
considering CLC-s expected length is 210,000+ words - after making some
cuts - as long as my muse cooperates, yeah, I can make it.
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PostSubject: Re: Meta: Let's Write About Writing!   5th December 2011, 12:58 pm

I write a lot and I'm never out of ideas. I actually have a hard time dealing with that because sometimes I am working on a specific novel and thousands of ideas come and haunt me until I write them down in a global way just to remember them and be able to come back to it afterwards. Then I can continue what I had first started. I'm also waking up in the middle of the night sometimes to write some parts of my dreams that give me idea for a story.

Of course, all my writings are in French since it's my primary language. I write mostly fantasy and I love Ninjas so it's not really surprising to find some of my stories based on that subject. I also write lots of horror stories, I've always loved horror movies and novels so... I have three suspenses I'm going to work on when I'll be done with my fantasy stuff. And I write some erotic stories also. One big novel which is almost finished and another with four shorter stories I will work on later.

Most of my writings count from 16 up to 22 chapters each and the last one I finished took me 2 months to write. It took me almost the same time illustrating it actually, but I love doing it so much I don't see time run.

I must not forget I sometimes write fanfiction too. I love it but I am not putting as much time into this because I want to be working on my own personal stuff before.

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