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Start writing the book?

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  1. GaMeFreakJ

    GaMeFreakJ Active Member

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    Not ready to write the idea

    Discussion in 'Novels' started by GaMeFreakJ, Jul 14, 2019.

    Hello People,

    Got a question about when an idea is so good that you don't want to write it as a beginning writer.
    The idea is going on the shelf to be written on the right time,
    Is this normal to do or is it best to just pick it up and start writing now its fresh?

    Greets,

    Derkboy
     
  2. The Piper

    The Piper Contributor Contributor

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    Seems pretty normal to me. I had one big idea that I wanted to write, and while I was working on and developing that idea I wrote two or three other stories. When I was finally ready, I knew. I got to writing it, and it ended up winning me a whole lot of competition money. If I'd written before I was truly ready, the other stories that I'd written in the meantime wouldn't have happened, and wouldn't have served as the practice that I needed to get that big idea to where I needed it to be. I probably wouldn't have then written anything else after, either.

    When you're ready to write it, you'll know.
     
  3. EFMingo

    EFMingo A Nefarious Flamingo Staff Contributor

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    I think you should just write it. Maybe it's the awesome idea you thought it was. Also, very possibly, it isn't. Either way, it's better to get it off your chest and find out. So what if your good idea turns out to be crap simply because of the writing? When it's off your chest, it's there in full form. Editing can always come later. Just don't lose it because you simply don't feel up to it at the time.

    I wonder how many great ideas and stories have been lost this way?
     
  4. The Piper

    The Piper Contributor Contributor

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    An excellent point
     
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  5. LoaDyron

    LoaDyron Contributor Contributor

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    Hello, friend. :superhello:

    I say write it down. Better now than later that you may forget one day. Write while it is still fresh. And who knows? You may implement that idea to another story if you realise it doesn't work as a one alone. Have fun with the concept. :superagree:
     
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  6. Lew

    Lew Contributor Contributor

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    Don't put off writing an idea!
     
  7. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin I'm the man and you're the man and he's the man Contributor

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    I've got a Holocaust book idea based on the Babi Yar massacre that I thought up when I was finishing my history degree. That was 10 years ago. And I won't write a single word until I'm goddamn good and ready. Need to take the time to research it properly. And i don't want to screw it up by firing prematurely.
     
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  8. peachalulu

    peachalulu Member Reviewer Contributor

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    Just write it. Even if it stinks you can go back to it later. That's what I'm going to do with my first book. I wrote it when I was about fourteen it turned out unpublishable but I still love the idea and one day I'll try it again.
     
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  9. GaMeFreakJ

    GaMeFreakJ Active Member

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    Interesting how you all say different things.

    Yeah, I agree with writing the story.
    I'm still working on plotting the whole thing and when that is good enough I will slowly start writing.
    There are indeed many rewrites necessary for this masterpiece to fully bloom, but I need to write it now xD

    Thanks for your advice and ideas, It really helped.

    Greets!
     
  10. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'd say by all means wait till you're ready to get started. But that's the only thing you should be waiting for.

    Don't wait around because you think the idea is too good to write! :eek:

    If you're still thinking through some aspects of the story—plot, character, etc—or doing preliminary research, yeah keep going with that. But don't let this pre-writing phase take so long that you lose enthusiasm. Don't be afraid to start even if you don't know where the story is going yet. Lots of us do that, and manage to finish.

    Stories certainly do evolve and change as they get written. But they won't ever get written if nobody starts them.
     
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  11. Raven484

    Raven484 Contributor Contributor

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    I always try to write what is fresh in my head. I might write the last chapter first, or somewhere in the middle before starting at the beginning. I find that when I get new ideas is when I am stuck and my mind wanders to a different story. I then put down my wip and start to outline the new idea. Usually by the time I finish, I am ready to go back to the original wip. Not for everybody, and it can get a little confusing sometimes. Keeps me writing fresh, just sometimes a little hard to organize.
     
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  12. suddenly BANSHEES

    suddenly BANSHEES Senior Member

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    There isn't any drawback to writing a rough draft now. It's not like the idea will "go bad" if you write a version you end up not liking.

    I've often put stories on hold because I thought I wasn't good enough to execute them. But the way you build your skills as a writer is to actually write! Even if you end up scrapping the entire thing and starting over, those words you'd written still count as progress.
     
  13. Lifeline

    Lifeline North of South. Contributor

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    I knew I was not ready to write my idea and I started anyway, knowing that what I wrote I'd have to treat as practice. I wrote in the vicinity of 300k before I finally got the courage up to try to do my story justice. I think I did it right. It was practice, and if I hadn't written it I couldn't have written what I write now. So I say, start. If anything, you can try out ideas and worldbuilding, making your story richer by the time you spend with it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
  14. badgerjelly

    badgerjelly Contributor Contributor

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    I can relate to this question. If you think it’s an absolutely stonkingly brilliant story you have to tell and your heart and soul is embedded in it, then wait.

    If you know you don’t currently have the ability to write how you’d like that doesn’t mean you cannot, or should not, write snippets of the narrative and/or play with different themes/characters.

    Just write stories for other ideas you don’t feel so attached to. This way you’ll not be so stressed about making a hash of it and get some goof practice in - not to mention a confidence boost to make you feel you’re moving toward your goal.

    No matter what you do I can pretty much guarantee whatever you have in your head will end up as a watered down version on paper - that’s just the nature of language and the limitations of human expression.

    Age and experience matter too - geniuses being exceptions.
     
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  15. jannert

    jannert Who? Whooo? Staff Supporter Contributor

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    If you start writing (not necessarily at the beginning ...you can start anywhere in the story) even if it doesn't turn out, you'll walk away (temporarily) with a better idea of what needs work. Did you discover a plot hole? Do you need to change a character? Maybe change the POV? The more you write, the more ideas will come to you.

    However, again, don't feel pressured to write if you're not ready.
     
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  16. Vellanney

    Vellanney Member

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    For me, if you have an idea but don't feel the desire to start it yet, you shouldn't. Wait until you get inspired to write it all out, or even just clips of it. If you force yourself to write, you might lose interest in what you were writing.
     
  17. marshipan

    marshipan Contributor Contributor

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    I wouldn't say I have specific book ideas I'm holding off on. Instead I'm holding back on complexity. I'm trying to keep my stories simpler while I work on becoming a better writer.
     
  18. Katibel

    Katibel Member

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    If I have what feels like a very good story, I will typically write my ideas down in a hasty outline. Then I wait, as others have suggested. That way I don't have to rush, and if I lose the spark then I can always wait for it to return without losing the story's concept. The outline can always be fleshed out / revised, too, as time goes on and better ideas overtake old ones.

    I don't always wait, though. For me it depends on the intensity of my passion for the work, since high passion equates to higher creativity. My feelings linger longer over some ideas than others, so I try to take that as my indicator. This has been my habit pretty much since the beginning.

    So, personally, I might suggest jotting down the idea then shelving that. :)
     
  19. deadrats

    deadrats Contributor Contributor

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    I remember thinking something similar to the op when it came to the first piece of fiction I wrote when I decided to really give fiction a go. I thought I had such a good idea for a story. And I sort of think it's always a good thing to jump right on a good idea. So, I wrote the story. It had pieces of what I had wanted, but it didn't really come out the way I thought it would. The thing was that when I actually wrote it out, the idea wasn't as good as I thought. It wasn't just about my writing ability. I had written the story I wanted. It was more about my storytelling ability and sort of knowing what makes a good story. I would not have figured this out so soon if I had not gone into this with the best story I thought I could come up with.

    I let that first story be and went onto write other things. A few years later I went back to that first story. I scrapped everything and opened a blank document to start again. It was a different story now. It was a way better story than I had ever thought of when I first had this idea. I kept some of the characters, but they had different roles in building the story. And I ended up selling that story. I don't know if I can really call it the first story I wrote because it ended up being a different story and about something else completely. But I never would have gotten to that point by holding off.

    A famous writer said you always write what you're supposed to when you're supposed to.

    Sometimes that might mean a draft that seems like it will go nowhere. Or maybe that's just how you had to start the process. I really don't think saving ideas until you're a better writer is going to do you any favors. Most writers have an unpublished manuscript floating around somewhere. But often it takes writing certain stories to be able to write better stories. And revision is a bitch so there's always that step which is going to be necessary no matter what you write.

    Everyone's got ideas they think are really great. So, write that really great idea. Better ideas will come and there will be more to write. I just strongly suggest you don't take the approach of waiting. You're writing a rough draft. And you can start over anytime. No one ever has to see it. I just think it's wrong to not go into writing with all you have. If your idea is better than your skills right now, maybe your idea is so good it will help you get through it. By the time you go back to revise or write a second draft, you'll be better. But maybe be then you'll have better ideas.

    If you start waiting on things, I can easily see that turning into a form of procrastination. And one of the biggest hurdles for a writer is procrastination.
     
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  20. Mckk

    Mckk Member Supporter Contributor

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    I have some friends who think like that. Result? They still haven't written more than a couple of scenes 10+ years later. Other things become priorities as they study, build careers, get married etc, all of which is fair enough. But really? As far as I'm concerned, these people aren't serious writers. They want to be writers. They are not writers and never will be, because one way or another they will find a reason not to write. And that's ok, of course. Not everyone should be writers and one does not have to be a writer to be a fulfilled, productive individual. However, let's not pretend such people are really writers, or that they care about writing very much, or that they would even be very good at it. If you never write, then how do you expect to ever become good at it, after all?

    I'm not saying they won't ever become good though. That's the shame about the whole thing that frustrates me. These friends of mine have great stories in their heads planned in such depth, so precious to them they refuse to share much of the plot at all because they just wanna "tell it right". They're also not bad writers - from what I remember reading, it was good enough, y'know? I have no doubt if they'd just write, they would be good. They are good writers. And that's what I find such a shame because I don't believe their stories will ever get written, for one reason or another.

    So all I can say is...

    Just write the damn thing.

    You'll never write a perfect draft. What comes out will never be good enough. That's what rewrites are for. That's what editing is for. So just accept that what comes out wouldn't be right regardless of how good you are, because perfect drafts just don't exist. Fine books exist because editing exists, not because all these authors only started writing when they thought they were "good enough".

    So just write it.
     
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  21. Rzero

    Rzero Reluctant voice of his generation Contributor

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    I don't usually disagree with this many people at once, so everybody please forgive me. @GaMeFreakJ, Yes you can write something mediocre and make it better as you edit. If it's just a confidence issue, then yes, you should probably just write it. If, on the other hand, you feel you need to hone your craft and have other projects on which you can practice, then by all means do so! Several of the posts in this thread are predicated entirely on the assumption that your idea probably isn't as good as you think it is. Don't listen to them. For all any of us knows, it's the single greatest idea ever for a book. We don't know. We can't assume. The only person here who even knows how this idea compares to other ideas you've had is you.

    I don't have a memory for these sorts of things, so I can't site sources, but I know I've read and watched interviews with authors who expressed a wish that they'd waited until their writing was more mature before tackling a subject or a specific project. Hell, this is one of the reasons so many writers bent on a career as a novelist still write short stories for a few years before tackling their first big novel. This is very common territory.

    Follow your instincts. If you're ready to write this, write it. If you need to work on something else first, do that. It doesn't mean you can't plan and outline and even write pages or chapters on the big one at the same time.
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2019
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  22. mochi-melo

    mochi-melo Member

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    I write those idea down on my journal but not really starting right away. I like to plan ahead esp. if a story has many twist and turns plus I tend to forget that precious idea no matter how good or bad it is. Although too much planning could end up not really starting one. (really learned the hard way) Right now, I want to make sure that it has at least a summary or a brief idea on what's it about. I tend to pick it up from time to time just so I wouldn't get out of touch in making stories.

    In some cases where a story sounds so awesome in the beginning but after re-reading it turns out to be bland, I drop it with no hesitation. Even those I planned out too much gets to be dropped too once I realize it's going nowhere. To make up for those dropped stories, I try to incorporate it in my other works.

    Back then, I jump straight ahead to any idea I could think of but at the cost of not finishing any story because I don't know how to continue. (my friends always nag me about it :oops:)
     
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  23. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Go ahead and write it. If the idea excites you, the passion will help you stick with itfor your first attempt. If nothing else, you'll gain some practice.

    Chances are, you won't be overjoyed with your first attempts at writing in any particular category, nor should you be. Nobody knocks it out of the park on the first couple tries, and it generally takes quite a long time to find your groove. In truth, many never get there, but none do without a painful and humbling learning curve.

    One of the best things to do is to take on the challenge, do the best you can with it, and then set it aside in a safe place. Then keep on writing. Some time later, look back at those early attempts, and cringe. But you should also be able to see how far you've come in that time, along with a few dozen ways you could improve on those early attempts.

    Write in as many genres and styles as you can. Make up specific challenges for yourself, for example, write a story in which the protagonist has to overcome his or her instinct to act, and instead do nothing. Or something as simple as writing a story from the perspective of the opposite gender from what you usually write from. Or write a story in first person without including any inner thoughts of the protagonist. These exercises will hone your skills and force you to explore new avenues.
     
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  24. LazyBear

    LazyBear Senior Member

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    Write it in high pace, get early feedback, then make a slow reboot. Just don't make so many reboots that you're confusing the reader with a growing complexity that you become blind of and forget to properly introduce.
     
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  25. Vaughan Quincey

    Vaughan Quincey New Member

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    Many years later, a strange new book begins with...
    'The morning my father died, he forgot his soul right over this desk, written on a little yellow note that took me years to understand...'

    Now, if you never write at least that little yellow note...
     

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