Monday, September 24, 2012

What's the Point?

I recently stumbled upon many lists and articles about how to write better stories, characters, etc. and they made me question my own novel.
More specifically, what's the point?
I've noticed that while writing my novel, as much fun as it has been, I've not been completely sure of what the point of it is. Yes I know who it revolves around and what happens, but I don't know what its focus is.
Even more alarming is that it's becoming very obvious that the novel that I'm having so much fun writing is not one that I could ever see myself picking up and reading for fun. It's simply not my style or preferred genre, yet I have thoroughly loved writing it.
Then comes the fact that, with the revisions I've been making in my rewrite, the original plot's conclusion makes less and less sense with every page I type.

Let's put it this way; the story is about persons X, Y, and Z. Person Y is the only of the three to carry the Y chromosome. Persons X, Y, and Z form a love triangle throughout the book, and person Y ends up with person X in the original draft. Except the more I write out their characters, it doesn't make any sense that persons X and Y would end up together.

I had no idea how to deal with this for the longest time, then I suddenly had an epiphany whilst watching a football game that person Y should end up with person Z, given certain events. I quickly ran the sequence of how that would happen and what the result would be in my head to find that it made perfect sense! It wouldn't even require me to change around certain later scenes too much, and in fact would make them even more dramatically interesting!
This slight change even completely shifts the focus of the novel, and more importantly, gives it one that's much more my style. All I would have to do is rewrite a few parts and continue on with the new plan!

Ryan's Brain enters the scene.

Ryan's Brain: Wait, but can I really make the entire thing work with just a few changes? With the new shift in focus, shouldn't there also be a brand new rewrite so that the new focus stays persistent throughout the entire novel? Maybe I should even shift the perspective the entire story is told in ... but then that would be undoing all the progress I've made in practicing with the current perspective I've chosen as well as the character development that goes hand-in-hand with the exact way I've written the story currently and---

Ryan's Brain melts onstage.

Yes. This complicates things quite a bit. While this little idea theoretically fixes all the issues I've been having, it opens the novel up to a barrel full of new problems. The fact of the matter is that I see no other choices than to either start everything over from scratch again (with a story that I still consider as practice and not representative of my best ideas), continue onward with the current style and see where it takes me (it is practice, after all), or drop the entire thing and move on to some other project that is more my style (and I have lists full of those ideas).
I just don't see a hybrid mash-up of original story and new ideas working.

Give me some advice by commenting on this post, or just tell me which option to take.
Don't forget to follow me on twitter.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

College Major vs. Minor

The dichotomy between my chosen major and minor in college is certainly an interesting one.
For those of you who do not know, I am majoring in advertising and minoring in English writing. This decision came to me at the tail end of my sophomore year after I realized that as much as I liked the idea of becoming an English teacher for high school, I just didn't feel passionate about it. I watched a few episodes of Friends, talked to a career counselor, and took a few personality/career tests, and they all pointed me into the direction of advertising. It turns out my interests all happen to translate to skills that are necessary to create effective advertisements.
Of course, I knew that I was very passionate about writing, and that not only would an English Writing minor help me to hone my skills at the craft, but it would also look good that a person trying to get into the advertising world happens to have a knack for creativity.
Sometimes creativity involves holding a pen with my chin.
To this day I am confident that these were the best choices for me. I have come to love learning and practicing advertising, and I have come to learn a lot about how to be a better writer. The thing that makes all of this interesting, however, is that in a perfect world they would match my true feelings and be the other way around; I would be majoring in English writing and minoring in advertising.
After all, if you can't tell from reading my blog, my true passion lies in writing. As much as I love advertising, I know I'd love to just spend my life writing novels for a living.

Also, this post happens to be the 22nd, which surpasses last year's amount of 21.
For more of my thoughts; follow me on twitter.