1. zilly
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    zilly Senior Member

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    What Is The Most Times You've Written the Same Story?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by zilly, Dec 9, 2010.

    I have an idea for a story that I'm very confident about. That being said, I've written the story (it's a short story) three times with different characters and in different ways, but I'm not happy with the way it turns out at all.

    So, what is the most times that you've written a story before you came about one that was satisfactory?

    I'm getting kind of worried. I really like the idea for this story and I'd really like to write a story like this, but it's just turning out so... meh.

    Thanks,
     
  2. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I don't think I've ever written something and considered it completely done, and then gone back and written it anew. What I have done, and more than once, is to go back after it was finished and completely reworked it. In one case, I made a major change in one of the main characters, keeping the character (a social worker in her early 30s) but giving her a little backstory to flesh out who she really was and why. And ultimately, it changed her relationship to the main character, so I considered it a success.

    I would suggest you go back to each of your three versions and read through them. Write down what it is you don't like about each version and why you think you had to change it. Then look at the subsequent versions to see if they added what you were after. I wouldn't just take another shot at it unless I knew what I was after. You may end up deciding that the idea wasn't all that great to start with.

    Best of luck,
     
  3. jo spumoni
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    jo spumoni Active Member

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    I wrote three or four versions of the same story once, but it was very short. It started as a part of a longer work and was intended to be the back story on one of the characters; I'd written about two and a half pages before I realized it didn't add anything at all to the novella, and was just me telling a whole lot of information. But I didn't want to throw it out because some of the writing was good. So I starting writing it as a separate work; it wound up being about 8 pages, but it wasn't very comprehensive. So I tried again, but this time, I essentially created a 10-page information dump with a twist that was way too obvious. So the 3rd time I tried, I boiled it down to only one scene and made the twist as hidden as I could. It would up being about 3 pages, and it was pretty successful, in my opinion.

    That being said, I've only done that for short stories. My only long work is pretty much how EdFromNY describes it--I finished it and edited various parts of it about a hundred times. Stuff need sprucing up here and there, and I deleted and added scenes as needed, but at no point did I try to rewrite the whole thing. My own work is sort of written in a bunch of scenes that are kind of stories of their own, so those have been written and rewritten a variety of times. Also, when I write, I tend to edit older scenes as I go to make them fit the newer ones, so the "finished" (ha, like anything's ever "finished"!) product is not something I'm too keen to start all over on. But to each his own of course. There's no right way to write a novel.
     
  4. R-e-n-n-a-t
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    R-e-n-n-a-t Contributing Member

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    I've rewritten a story eight times, not including separate drafts of each. And every time, aside from perhaps my current version, it has failed. It was quite depressing at first, but I've grown to believe it was a learning experience. I'm a better writer because of it.

    P.s; it was a full length novel, so it took forever.

    Edit; Each time, I got to about page 400 before I decided it wasn't good enough.
     
  5. Unit7
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    Unit7 Contributing Member Contributor

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    There is one story that has gone over several complete rewrites. The general idea of the characters remained the same. But each rewrite gave them new backstories. I also switched the names of my Main Character and his mentor.

    But what has remained the same is mostly my MC wanting to join an elite group. He always ends up in love with the same character... who either dumps him or he dumps her(never quite got that far...) and she ends up with her own mentor.

    But yeah the story itself has only remained the same with charactes and love interests. lol
     
  6. zilly
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    zilly Senior Member

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    After reading this, I think the problem might be that, surprisingly, I have the majority of the story figured out. The only part of the plot that changes is about the first 10% or so. After that, it's a little different, but it's basically the same story.

    I know exactly how I want it to end and I'm just struggling to figure out how to start it so that it ends there.

    Also, I'm having trouble getting the story to have the right amount of humor. It seems like I've been in a Goldilocks-like situation. It either gets to be too silly or it's not very funny. So, when I change the characters, I'm always trying to adjust it so that I get to the right amount of humor, but it's just not working out. Plus, I'm having trouble getting it to end exactly how I want.

    I don't know. Maybe I just need to think about it a lot more.
     
  7. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    once...
     
  8. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    I rewrote my first story in several different locations and in several different POVs before I settled on the one that I liked best.

    I am not that attached to any words or story I can't delete and rewrite or tweak until I am happy with it and the way it is going.
     

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