Friday, June 24, 2011

One Eye Open.

This is not a book review. Promise.

I'm still in revisions. Most of you already know that. As I've gone through my WIP, yet again, I've been trying to ask myself certain questions. One of them is always about conflict. Is there enough of it? Is it in the right places? Will anyone care? And lastly, will it make a readers mouth drop or cause them to lose sleep? No. No. Maybe. And no. So, now I'm in the masterminding process but I'm not sure I'm being fair to me. You see, several weeks ago the unimaginable happened. (I may have already mentioned this) I had just finished a great book, headed to the bookshelf to put it away and grab one off the to-read shelf when I realized I had no more. GASP! Nothing! Panic button, Hello. Then I remembered the City of Bones (Clare) book I'd bought my daughter for Christmas. After inquiring on its location, I found myself digging it out from under her bed. I blew through it. Moved onto number two and now I'm nearly done with book three, City of Glass. I'm literally walking around my house in a zombie like state with one eye open and have been for the last few weeks now. I'm up half the night reading these books. Funny thing is I never really thought I'd like them. Wrongo. Isn't that how it always is. You have no interest in a book then you read it and it becomes one of your favorites.

Hold on, this is not a book review. I promised.

I've lost sleep because there is so much conflict. Sure, some of it is predictable. Some. But for the most part, I go to bed swearing I'm just gonna read one chapter and the next thing I know its 3 a.m. You should be around when the alarm goes off in the morning. Not pretty. The conflict is on nearly every page. You can't look away. It is that good. So it makes me wonder, could my characters and my story ever hold someone like that? I want to keep people up at night. Its part of my diabolical plan. I want someone to roll out of bed, stare at their disheveled reflection in the bathroom mirror and say, "you're weak Mckee" (hopefully they'll insert their name here instead of mine), because they should have put the book down and gone to sleep. They just couldn't do it. This puts a little more pressure in this whole book writing thing doesn't it? I think I can handle it. Flings self from computer chair, careful to fall on dog bed, then stares blankly at the ceiling, waits for death. Out of coffee, heads to kitchen. Coffee in pot has been depleted. Nooooo.....How about you? Is there enough conflict in your writing? Are you throwing everything imaginable at your characters?



  1. Yes!! Conflict, I have no problem with. It's the description and pace I need help with. I'm afraid I have too much action, but that's what I enjoy writing. I put my character through so much, I feel badly about it. Lol

  2. Me too Miranda, my poor characters. :)

    In my first book the poor girl just turns around and someone else is leaving her, another bomb is destroying the city, etc. My beta readers seem to read it in a few days, so that's a good thing.

    My current WIP has conflict but not as much cause I'm trying to stretch it out a bit. We'll see if that's a mistake though.

  3. Ah, I know that desire all too well. :)

    Of course, the way I see it is that I want to get people to care about the characters and their problem. I've read books that ooze conflict, but I care about the characters so little I can take a break from them. I feel like conflict can be put in pretty easily, but shaping those characters around the conflict, without being too whiny or too heroic or unrealistic, to have them be flesh...that's what I try to concentrate on to keep readers turning pages.

  4. Gah! That is a VERY good question to ask yourself as a writer, about your book. Not sure mine could hold up to that test. It's a cool goal to have, though--enough conflict and tension and interesting things happening to make someone lose sleep over. Aren't we mean as writers?

  5. I was up late last night reading too. Curses. I'm in the midst of beefing up the conflict too. I have a bit of a devil may care attitude at this point. Those characters aren't going to know what hit them.


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