Saturday, August 2, 2008

Brewing, Composting, Percolating

I've been doing a fair bit of scribbling in my notebook. Nothing earth-shattering. Just processing ideas, writing about the pup, the kids, about me not writing productively (that is, no deadlines). A couple of days ago, a voice emerged. "This is my purpose," she said. And my hand is aching as this girl tells her purpose, or what she assumes is her purpose. It's a story that explores duty and freedom. I have been thinking of this for years and years and years. And finally, there's the voice, the perfect characters to explore this idea with.
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Almost all my stories, both short and long, have an extremely long gestation period. We're talking years here, not months. My historical YA has been percolating for a good twenty years. The novel I wrote last fall had been composting for a couple more decades. And this one -- I don't know what it is yet -- but I've been thinking about this in some way for close to thirty years. I'm in my 40s, so yes, I was a kid when I was first thinking about this. To finally have words to express these ideas is exhilarating. This is what I love about writing.
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So tell me, how long do your stories brew in your head before you actually start writing?
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5 comments:

Susan Sandmore said...

Looks like five to ten years for mine, before I have something worth saying! Yikes. I just keep remembering my businessman brother-in-law's phrase--"feeding the pipeline." Right now, I'm working on stuff that was started (in my head) long ago. But I also have to start some things now so I'll have material for . . . 2018. *whimper*

C.R. Evers said...

My current YA Novel took about 5 years before it finally came together enough to start writing it. I now have 3 drafts completed. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one that has idea's take years to brew before coming out. :0)

good luck with your work!

christy

Vijaya said...

You're both waaaaay ahead of me :)

Susan, the new stuff I'm thinking of will definitely be ripe in a decade or two. Hope I live long enough ...

Angela said...

Mine sit on the burner for about a month if I'm currently not emmersed in a project, longer if I am. I have to 'avoid' thinking about it if that's the case, because once I commit to shaping the original image that brings the story to me, that's it--floodgate opens. And once that happens, the story must be fleshed out and then written.

Angela said...

immersed, that is. Perhaps I should spend more time spell checking and less time typing, le sigh...