1. Jesusfreak97
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    Jesusfreak97 Member

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    I feel like i butchered my story

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Jesusfreak97, Jul 31, 2015.

    I just need to rant for a bit here. I feel like I completely butchered my story and I am so frustrated because I spent so much time on it. I hate it and I want to finish it but how do I not hate it? Help?
     
  2. AspiringNovelist
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    AspiringNovelist Contributing Member

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    Go back to where you were excited about the story and start again. Like, mindspeak "Ah man, I love that part..."
     
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  3. Jesusfreak97
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    Jesusfreak97 Member

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    That's gonna be EXTREMLY difficult because I have about 113 pages written and my favorite parts come at the end. :-(

    It's difficult because when I write I write a lot in a short amount of time and then it turns out really bad and then I get overwhelmed by the editing process.
     
  4. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    Pretty much any work of art you're working on is going to have a shit-nasty stage. Pottery, painting, drawing, writing, they all have a moment where you look at the piece and think, "What the fuck was I thinking".

    The trick is to power through it and remain true to your vision.
     
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  5. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Are you just frustrated and having a moan but really you know you're going to put things right? 113 pages is not a lot when you consider you probably need treble that but to write that much and then edit it is bad planning in my eyes. I edit as I go along and it seems to feed my story. If you've barely edited it in 113 pages I'd imagine it's complete crap - no wonder you don't want to go back, you probably don't even want to read it again. I would say, put it down for a month or so then pick it back up and start at the beginning, editing as you go - remember what Hemingway said and don't blame yourself. I've rewritten my MS a squillian times and to be honest my own work bored me stiff but it's getting there.

    upload_2015-7-31_12-43-39.jpeg
     
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  6. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    Yeah - power through. Keep writing, or as someone said, if you have a specific point where you think everything "went wrong" - go back to that point and start from there. But mostly keep writing, the first draft is going to suck anyway (see above post from @erebh ).

    Now- the emergency solution (and I mean EMERGENCY) is to take a break and write something else until burnout wears off. I had to do this last year and work on a side-project for about a month. I was mad at my story and a couple people in my writing group had taken some really hard shots at the basic premise and kept insisting it couldn't work - I burned out and got really scared because I was trying to write something that wouldn't get me yelled at. After about a month, I really started missing my main story, it had enough time to cool, and I was able to write a lot more of it a lot faster - because I'd had time to think about how to approach it.

    I wouldn't actually recommend that to anyone unless you're TOTALLY burnt out - but in extreme scenarios it can work, as long as you're very committed to coming back and finishing.
     
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  7. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's not until you seriously attempt writing a novel that you fully appreciate just what a bastard hard process it is. I read novels, follow the simple but effective prose and story structure, and think to myself, "I could do this. This guy isn't using words I don't know or understand... it's a simple enough story. I can do it."

    And then I try and realise I'm failing on every level; sentence structure, vocabulary, story, style (or lack of).

    Like erabh I edit as I write, and for me this means rereading every paragraph dozens of times before I'm happy to move on. Five-thousand words in and I'm getting sick of being in my character's company and world.

    It's hard - you just got to slog through. If it's the end stuff you like, rewrite the first part and apply the same style.
     
  8. Commandante Lemming
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    Commandante Lemming Contributing Member Contributor

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    Word of advice - if you can help it - don't edit as you write. This is the road to madness and potential burnout - plus it's impossible inasmuch as you can't really prefect a paragraph or a chapter or a paragraph before you know what comes after it.

    There's a spectrum here among writer - but for me...Writing is writing. Editing is editing. My "Editing" is probably about ten chapters behind where I am in the writing. This is a skill that has to be developed in order to keep oneself sane - give yourself permission to write garbage in the name of getting to the end. You can sort out the garbage once you've finished brain-vomiting the story onto the page.

    Also - in terms of getting sick of the characters - in my experience you have to forge a connection with them. I let my story sit in my head for eight years, but it kept bothering me, so I launched in. Now that I'm started, I kind of feel like I owe it to the characters to finish it in some weird way, not finishing would be like letting down friends, and that's part of what keeps me writing. (Cue massive debate about author connection to people who aren't real and mechanics of the human brain). But seriously, spending time away from my characters actually made me miss them and realize how much I enjoy their company in a weird way.
     
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  9. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    Not to hijack the thread here, but I have tried not editing, and find it virtually impossible. If I write a sentence, I instantly see that it would look better with a different word here and there, or an expansion. When I see those things, I simply cannot move on until I've made the alterations.

    Love the expression 'brain-vomiting', by the way :D
     

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