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Let's Talk About Writing.

Writer's block.

Let's Talk About Writing.

viggo and orli by jenlynn820

A forum for Vigorli writers to share, to discuss, to debate.

Writer's block.

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Orli Turkey
 I am itching to write a multi-chapter VigOrli. 

Really itching. 

But for some reason, I just can't get going. Started it many times, with many different plot bunnies, got maybe one chapter going, and then dumped it as not good enough. I know the basic way that I want the story to go. I am talking modern day, present time AU. Angst, hurt/comfort, fluffy moments. Sex. The works, basically. 

What I am probably lacking is confidence. 

There are so many great, long, V/O Au's out there, how can I make mine worth reading? 

I want to read a really great, long, angsty, H/C AU and since no one is writing at the moment, I guess what I want is to make my own. 

If I could only get going. *sigh* 

Any advice, people? 

Lena XXX
  • What's the conflict? A story without a conflict to solve fizzles out. Give your character a conflict or problem, then figure out how he'll solve it to get what he wants, and write down the "bones" of the story to see where it'll head. Once you decide that, you can fill in the blanks with details. :)

    angiepen gave me this advice. When I got stuck she told me to talk her through it in email, explaining why the protagonist had a problem, what it was, and how it would be resolved. When I had done that she told me I had just written out my plot. I never realized it worked that way before. I mean, loosely, kind of. But not quite in those words, and it helped me to think of it as that simple. Maybe it'll help you too.

    Best of luck. :)
    • I have a clear idea of the conflict, hon. The problem is as you say how to solve it in an original way. I don't just want to go down the road of all Orlando's problems are solved by falling in love with Viggo. It can help, but I need more. I will do as you suggest and write out the bones of the story, then maybe the rest will eventually fall into place. Thanks for that.
  • I'm writing a semi-long one. But it won't be posted until it's finished.
    It's progressing nicely though! :D

    My only advice is really 'just write it'... don't give up on it, especially if you manage to crack a few pages off at once. That means the bunny is there and developed, it just may need fed.

    Edited at 2007-11-27 11:39 (UTC)
    • I would like to get most of the chapters written before I post too, then it won't be so obvious to anyone that I have "lost the plot", should it happen.

      God luck with the new one, can't wait to read it. :)
  • talking it through does help. also, maybe you're trying with too many different bunnies (you did mention that)? when they crowd you, they tend to suppress each other. pick one you personally love best, jot down the others for the future, and concentrate on one

    as for the lack of confidence - yeah, it's familiar, but you just need to beat it with a stick :) i'm sure you'll write a great story eventually *hugs*
  • I would suggest starting out with shorter stories. :) A ficlet is easier to tackle than a long, plotty, multichapter story. That's how I started, at least. ;P Save the more complicated plot bunnies for later; when you realise that you can flesh out a bunny into a "real story", even if it's "only" one part long, you probably will feel more comfortable with starting a longer story.

    The confidence takes some time to build, but once you're familiar with your style, it will come. :)
    • I have written long fics before, sweetie. Two, in fact. 19 and 27 chapters! I still can't believe the second one was that long. :) I do think that I can do this, I just need to sort out the plot and direction in my head and go with it.

      Maybe I am just procrastinating, I don't know. I think I am a perfectionist too. LOL. It's driving me mad!

      Edited at 2007-11-27 14:40 (UTC)
      • Oops, sorry. I somehow got the impression that you're a "new" writer. :)

        Procrastinating is my middle name, I fear. ;P Not just in writing fiction, but in other things as well. So don't worry, you're not alone! I've also noticed that I need to be in a certain mood to be able to write, to feel genuinely inspired so to speak. When the mood is right the words come out easily, if the mood is wrong I can't write anything worth posting. *g*
        • Not new to writing, but certainly new to writing V/O and slash. Of the two that I have written, one was a LOTR adventure, the other an Orlando het. :) Maybe it is foraging into the world of writing slash that is scaring me the most. :(
  • What I like to do when I start a story is to think up a problem that I haven't seen before. Or, in case I have seen it before, I think up a twist that I haven't seen before, or a solution that I haven't seen before. That sounds both easier and more difficult than it really is *g*

    On the one hand, of course everything has been done before. That's ok, doesn't mean your story isn't worth reading just because there already are stories out there with a similar theme. On the other hand, finding a new twist is hard, but it's still possible. For yourself, think about what you like when reading a story.

    Which parts are the most important ones for you?
    Which do you end up only skimming when you read a great story for the third, fourth, fifth time?
    And then, which parts are easiest to write for you, and with which do you have more problems?

    Questions like these, will very general, should give you a start on deciding not about the plot in itself, but about which general bits in a story you want to put the most emphasis on. Some people write wonderful UST; others do better with writing an established relationships and the problems within that; some people do better with problems created between the two protagonists, others need the problems to be created on the outside.
    Find out where your strengths lie, then make the plot fit your strengths. It won't work good if you for example love reading UST, but are much better at writing an established relationship fic.

    Another thing I've come to realize is that the author should know their characters way beyond what's ending up in the story. Every person has a background and our expiriences are what makes us the persons we are. So if you, say, want a daredevil character who tries to solve every problem on his own, without asking anyone for advice or help, and fails each time, you should ask yourself why this character hasn't learned yet out of his expiriences. Why is it that he still refuses help? Where does his confidence to solve a problem on his own comes from? Is it even confidence or simply arrogance? You probably won't need to ever answer these questions within the fiction, at least not in great detail, but if you as the author know them, your character will a) let himself be written much easier and b) read much more real.

    I found this list of The 100 Most Important Things To Know About Your Character a while ago, and while I don't think that an author should be able to answer all of these 100 questions about their character, simply going through the list and trying to answer as many as possible of these will help a lot. It'll show you where you don't know anything about your character yet, where you need to flesh him out more, and probably give you some very interesting ideas for the story while you're at it.
    I tried it with one of my characters for a new story, and he suddenly started to tell me of his childhood of which I had known nothing before, which I had figured unimportant anyway, and I ended up realizing that a lot of what made this character tick in a certain way goes back to expiriences in his early childhood.
    Save the list before you go to write, too, so you can look up what's in there while you're writing. That way, you're having a reference for all the small things that round off a story and make it feel all the more real to the reader.

    As for procrastination, I wish I knew what to do against that. It's my biggest foe as well *sighs*
    • Oh, that site should help. I do agree, a character needs background. I guess a fanfic writer using established RL actors can get lazy and just let the reader fill in the blanks when making them AU. I like to change everything about the actor, not just taking him out of the actor universe he currently belongs in.

      Thanks for that link, Mo.
    • I see my characters as that always: characters. No matter how much or little I chose to change from reality when putting them in an AU story, they're still my characters foremost and so I need to know all about them. And given that we put them into situations we often have no idea how the real people would react to anyway, it not only gives us the freedom to write the stories in a way we want, it also means we need to know why they react how they do.
      And if you change everything about them, it's all the more reason to write it down so you don't forget details halfway through. I'm always really anal about such stuff... I worry about the tiniest details. Damn perfectionism. *lol*
    • Knowing your characters inside and out is by far the best advice I've ever had, and that isn't limited to fanfiction; the best movie performances are from actors who know everything there is to know about the character they're playing, Viggo is a prime example of this.
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