1. sprirj
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    sprirj Contributing Member

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    Where did it all go wrong?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by sprirj, Feb 17, 2016.

    Well, not wrong exactly, but different.

    I had a clear idea for my first novel. I planned a little, wrote a lot, scrapped it, planned a lot, wrote a little...

    Now my book has developed into something very different to what I had in my head to begin with... And I'm not sure it is a good thing.
    I'd like to work back towards my original inspiration, but not sure how it would fit in the context of my book.

    To give a bit more info, here is a rough outline...

    Original idea : MC is a boxer, he completes against other boxers for the title. In his spare time he beats people up for giggles. He isn't very nice, but the more abuse he witnesses at his own hands, the more he discovers his soul. Until he can't even box anymore and throws the big final fight.

    Current development: MC is a hacker. He discovers an underground world of secrets. In his spare time he beats people up involved in this under world to gain information and truths. He is unsure of his world and paranoid. The more abuse he witnesses the closer he gets to the truth, until the truth is revealed which is detrimental to his life.

    My current work, has more motive, but I liked the animal instincts and 'nutter' MC I had in my original. Any advice? Or similar problems with your own development?

    PS Neither of the above outlines, are my actual work, just an approximation for the sake of the thread, as I'm slightly uncomfortable sharing my true 'unique' novel. It was just to give an example of how the story has bent.
     
  2. izzybot
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    izzybot Human Disaster Contributor

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    I've had projects diverge so severely from their original concept that I just decided to revisit the original concept and purposefully stick closer to it. Not quite the same thing, but in a sci-fi project I decided certain technologies - even though they'd been integral to the original plot - weren't consistent with the setting after more development. But I still thought they were cool, so I just shunted them over to seed a new project that was more about the subplot they'd concerned / concepts they'd represented in the original one, which had similarly become kind of redundant or anachronistic.

    To be fair, I like juggling a lot of projects and I like to think I'm pretty good at it. It might not be the solution for you. But it definitely feels like I'm getting away with having my cake and eating it too, so I'm a fan.
     
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  3. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    I have something similar happening in my WIP. I've been unsatisfied with my mc whose backstory was that he was put in prison for revenge murder - murdering the men who murdered his family. I felt the idea was too 'Hollywood' and decided, screw it, I'm changing the reason - which had a ripple effect. It changed his character and those around him. There's not much I can do about it now as I'm half way through so I'm going to keep on truckin till I'm done the first draft and work things out in the second draft.

    I don't know about advice as this has happened to me practically with every project. I have an idea how things are going to be and they change or evolve. Usually I finish what I'm doing and then hold them up to comparison. I wrote one novel with about four drafts ( I'm unsure about that number as I've lost a draft ) - they changed pretty drastically between drafts but it was nice to see the outcome of each and decide which one ( or parts were better. )

    My advice would be to finish your project and in your second draft make some corrections ( if you feel they're still needed ) to include your original idea. Or save the original idea for another project.
     
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  4. Feo Takahari
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    Feo Takahari Active Member

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    When one of my characters changes that radically, it's usually because he was completely unsuited to the role I tried to put him in. For instance, I once tried to use an arrogant, amoral vampire sorcerer as an antihero and reluctant ally of the MC. He fit so poorly in a supporting role that I eventually rewrote him as the villain who killed the MC's parents. (For the record, his replacement was a hyperactive young sorceress who watched too much anime and thought she was a magical girl. It was SO much easier to write positive interactions between her and the MC, and she fit the themes better, too.)
     
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  5. sprirj
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    sprirj Contributing Member

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    Thanks everyone for the responses. I'm glad I'm not the only one. Each message helped me rethink my story. I am going to mutate my characters motives to try and cover both plots. Thanks again for your help :)
     

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