Hello dear readers! Tomorrow is Halloween and the day after that is NaNoWriMo and I am super excited! You'll be able to see my Halloween costume on my Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, and you can keep up with my NaNo progress on the sidebar, through social media updates, and directly on my NaNoWriMo page.
Now for today's post.
Today, I'm going to write about the hardest scenes I've had to write, and the hardest moments in my life, and sort of parallel them. Writing very much follows the author's life, I've discovered, even though it's not usually intentional, and thus by looking deeper into the writing, you can look deeper into the life, and vice versa.
I'm going to try my best to keep this spoiler-free, but be warned, I might reveal a bit about my books.
*For a later post on a similar topic, click here.*
Although sixth grade, the year I wrote my first two novels, was one of the most difficult years I've been through, I don't actually have much to parallel it to in my works. Seventh grade reveals more, particularly with THE LAST HOPE which was ultimately an exercise of me coming to terms with a troublesome boy who had recently come into my life.
But it wasn't until eighth grade, the worst year of my life, that my books started really reflecting my problems and having related, complicated scenes that I sometimes struggled to get through. The first major novel I wrote in eighth grade, which has since been scrapped and turned into fodder for new ideas, was called TWIST, and it was an exercise in depression. Low self-confidence, depression, abuse, trauma, and a very questionably desperate fairytale ending all appeared in this book, revealing exactly what was happening in my own life.
After that, I wrote THE PSYCHIC STORY, which has also now been scrapped due to me not actually knowing anything about how war works. That novel was related to TWIST in a lot of ways, but focused primarily on the struggles of fear and faith in relation to love. It took me a long, long time to get to the right ending for that novel. I had to rewrite it three times because, due to my own confusion about my own life, I couldn't quite figure out what the theme really was, and what my goal was in writing the story.
In ninth grade I started THE CHOSEN FOUR series, which at first (though it did need a lot of editing afterwards) I didn't have all that much trouble with. It was almost an alternate version of THE PSYCHIC STORY. Then I came to the third book, ON THE RUN (which I re-titled three times incidentally), and I ran into an aggravating block. I got halfway through the story and suddenly it was making me sick. I'd gone off in the wrong direction, and that wrong direction was THE PSYCHIC STORY. I was trying to use the same plot scheme with a related character, and it wasn't right. Not for this story.
So I rewrote the section twice and found a new thing for my main character to angst about, and everything cleared up. I finished that book in a record time for me then: two months. (Today, I think I'm at 18 days for my shortest time writing a novel, and like five years for the longest.) Then I finished the series with no more setbacks and all was well.
After that, I developed fibromyalgia, and everything went to the dogs, really. But not in my writing. No, writing was going quite well, and though my struggle showed up in a sort of distant, metaphorical way with a character in THE PROPHECY KEEPER, I was doing quite fine when it came to writing. After that, I wrote a very different book that was directly about fibromyalgia, WHAT IT TAKES TO DEAL, and raced through it. I don't recall running into any walls with that novel either, except after, in editing, but those walls are more about how honestly strange that book is. Good, but strange. We shall see about it.
I also finished PERISHED, which is the five-year novel, around that time. It took me so long, I think, because I wasn't getting the right inspiration. It finally came around strong and sure in twelfth grade, and after that things were a bit slow, but okay. It was hard pulling together all the ideas related to the novel into an actual story, but it came out quite nicely, I think.
This past year, I wrote MERCIFUL, which is the first novel in what's going to become a trilogy. It has the short record, the 18 days. When you read it, someday, you'll see a lot about family. That was what I was thinking about, at college, away from home, and that's what the novel turned into. Another notable piece in the novel is "parentification." Parentification is something you actually see a lot in children's/YA novels, because parents get in the way of stories and also because adult writers sometimes have trouble getting themselves in teenage heads. Basically, it's a situation where a child, usually the oldest, becomes a substitute parent in the family due to the absence, either physically or emotionally, of an actual parent.
Overall, MERCIFUL was easy to write, and that's how I hit the record there.
Now, I'll be moving on with the trilogy, as further mentioned, with the intention of finishing one novel and getting some progress on another within one month for my new NaNo goal. When they're done, I'll be able to tell you what part of my life they reflect. But for now, that is all.
Thanks so much for reading. I hope this was somewhat interesting and meaningful to you. Come back next time for our November humor post and the beginning of NaNoWriMo!
If you're a writer, what have been your hardest scenes to write, and how does your work reflect your life?
Images via medievalbridalfashons.com and prohealth.com.
I'm an unpublished novelist, primarily of YA fantasy, and a freelance editor. I love psychology, cats, social justice, and love! I'm also a huge fangirl. More than anything, stories are my life.
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