1st year I wrote over 50000 words. The year after 30628. Not too bad. In 2012, only 5179! I need a serious game plan this year! #NaNoWriMoNaNoWriMo begins in less then two months now and seen how I've been unable to replicate the victorious glory of 2010, I'm doing all I can this year to secure a win. I can't loose again. My self esteem will go down in the toilet if I fail one more time.
— Isabelle Simard (@izzy682) September 5, 2013
So after deciding that it was time to put away all my other obsessions such as knitting and crochet, I'm now reading "No Plot? No Problem!" by Chris Baty again. Reading books will be an essential part of my "training". Nothing gets my imagination ramped up like reading a good science book or fiction.
I also worked today on two lists of things I like and don't like about novels, an exercise proposed by Chris' book. And here they are:
Magna Carta I - The things I love in novels.
-Witty exchanges, like those Joss Wheddon write.
-Made up cultures, words and worlds.
-Small, seemingly irrelevant details peppered throughout the story at the beginning, that become relevant later on.
-Happy, hopeful endings
-Quirky, imperfect characters.
-Cliffhanger chapter endings
-Strong female characters
-Smart but unpretentious writing
-Swear words. I love them even more if they are made up.
-When you have to figure out the truth for yourself. Similar to how readers had to figure out who Jon Snow's parents actually were or the meaning behind the screaming iron hinge flashbacks that the Damphair experience in George R. R. Martins' A Song of Ice and Fire. George doesn't say outright who Jon's parents are but he leaves soooo many clues for readers to pick out, with also seeds of doubt thrown in there. He doesn't say either that the Damphair was raped as a child by the Crow's Eye... but his flashbacks strongly hint to a traumatic events in his past of a rapey nature.
-Backstories told trough the perspective of different characters.
Magna Carta II - The things I hate in novels:
-Perfect, unrealistic romance on which I blame most of my teenage love woes. Damn you Walt Disney!!
-A lack of strong, independent female characters
-I don't like how space drives some folks in sci-fi coocoo. I'm sure space is scary at times but still... I don't like sci-fi that gets too philosophical about space either. Poetic 'a-la-Carl-Sagan, sure. Philosophical... not so much.
-Black and white characters. No one is 100% good or bad.
-Stories that presume to tell me how I should feel about something. Pretentious, opinionated story telling.
-Usually not a fan of post-apocalyptic sci-fi... unless it's the Hunger Games trilogy.
-I hate stories that begin so well and then become overly philosophical and twisted. Kind of like most mangas I like in the beginning and absolutely hate in the end.