Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Working out Conflict

Yesterday was a regrouping day on the current project. I was trying to figure out whether it was time to jump to the next part of the story or if I needed something else to happen in this part, so I went back and re-read from the beginning. I was stuck in the middle for so long that I had this impression of really slow pacing there, and it turns out that part flew by pretty quickly. However, it does seem like my recent conflict aversion has struck, and so there are some pivotal scenes that need fixing. I was dealing with conflict by having someone point out an issue and then everyone else agreeing that this was a good point. So, yeah, that's going to need work, and I should probably do it before I move on because it's possible that in redoing it and really digging into the conflict, I'll come up with an idea for something that will happen down the line. Rewriting now may mean less rewriting later, and the rewriting is going to have to happen at some point.

There's one idea I got recently from a history documentary I watched, and now I'm trying to figure out where to fit it in. There are two segments of the story where it could work, but I'm not sure which is best. It may be time for a pro/con list.

Meanwhile, one of my other ideas is really taking shape, though it's now gone in some really unexpected directions. In figuring out the why this person, why now part, I came up with a pretty complex backstory. And then I was trying to figure out how to fit that in. The backstory is its own story that's as strong as the present-day story, but without the context of the present-day story, it would lose impact, so I don't think it would work well to write it in series form, with a book about the backstory and a book about the present day. It's too much for just a prologue or even for weaving in to explain the present.

And then I got the idea that it might work in a structure like on Lost or Once Upon a Time, where there's a flashback story and a present-day story woven together. Though this would be more like the first season of Once Upon a Time, with a complete backstory story in the flashbacks, rather than the way they've gone more recently with the character-centric episodes. And one character's backstory might be non-chronological, starting with more recent events and then working backward. I had a non-linear story on my literary bucket list but never had the plot for it, and now I do.

And to think, this was going to be my "easy" book that I could just write while I'm working out the details on a fourth Fairy Tale book. I've never even attempted something that jumps around in time and tells multiple stories simultaneously. I think it'll be fun, but not quick and easy.

It's too bad I don't have anything relatively quick and easy ready to go because weird things are happening to book sales. Even with a relatively recent release, which usually bumps things for a while, sales are really down, and I'm hearing that from a lot of authors. We aren't sure if it's because the market is being flooded with cheap books now that everyone's jumping on the publishing bandwagon, if it's the "Kindle Unlimited" thing that's keeping people from buying new books when they can get all the books they want with a monthly subscription (and it has to be exclusive to Kindle to be included in that, which is why I'm not doing it), or something else. I don't know if more promotion will help, since I don't know the cause of the drop and it's across the board, so the only way around it is to write more. And pray for something big to happen to give me a boost, like a celebrity becoming a fan and gushing all over Twitter, or getting a major award nomination, or getting a TV/movie deal, or getting another traditional publishing contract with a publisher who actually does something to push and promote the book.

No comments: