Fairy Tale Remix Week 2

Words written since Week 1: 7,465

15068 / 150000 words. 10% done!

"It's a dangerous business, going out your front door." -Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien

I originally wanted to reach 20k words, but I found myself writing less than anticipated during the week with some late school nights.

However, I finished the second chapter, a glimpse into the world of the antagonists, which was a fun little delve into my horror roots. I’ve now started the third chapter. I know how it’ll end, but not necessarily how to get there. I guess that’s going to be the subject of my next plotting sessions at work this week.

I’ve also reached a point at which I’m not sure about whether I’m really pulling off what I’m writing. I usually don’t get to this point until I’m closer to 30k words, but I got there early.

I think many writers feel that what makes it on the page doesn’t quite match up with the masterpiece they had in their heads. A consequence of fantasy meeting reality, I guess. I try to make my first draft as close to that fantasy as I can, but I inevitably fall short. The language doesn’t always get me to whereI want the scene to be, or the character interactions or character thoughts don’t go where they feel natural. I try to listen to my characters, but sometimes it still doesn’t feel right.

At its foundation, I wonder if my writing has not yet matured to the level it takes to handle the concept. Sure, the concept is good, but if the execution is subpar to the concept, that doesn’t do anyone much good. I don’t think I’m a bad writer – I think I do all right. But I’m never quite sure whether I do well enough.

I still give myself a kick in the ass to write, whether I’m feeling secure or not, but it makes me second-guess every second, every word.

Perhaps part of it is that, now that I’m a good bit into the story, I feel daunted by just how much farther I have to go. And perhaps I am discouraged by the knowledge that it’ll be more of an uphill climb than the first chapter for the rest of the novel. I’ve never let that stop me when writing a novel, but it does make me sigh and wonder whether the end result will truly be worth the trip.

I’m hoping these insecurities will, in the end, prove themselves groundless when I reacquaint myself with the novel during edits. It’s happened before. But before I get to the edits, I suppose I must make my journey through this draft first and struggle through the quagmires of discontent and self-consciousness and insecurity. This too shall pass.

And so, into the woods…

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