Instead Of

What have I been doing lately instead of blogging? Mostly trying to survive NaNoWriMo without going into total physical collapse. It seems to be more draining every year, and I suppose one of these years I’m just going to have to pass. So why am I blogging elsewhere if I’m so darn tired? And it isn’t really blogging. More like letting off steam in short bursts. I have to do something to keep from going crazy from the stress of writing a novel in 30 days. So I created a Google+ Collection. Offbeat Notes on Writing Fiction will be my place to dump rants, notices of interesting stuff on the net, remarks about books, and my trademark weird approaches to writing.  Right now, I’m popping in there two or three times a day with short bits, but I’m sure that will sometimes drop to zero or less.

Elsewhere — I’m crocheting a scarf, for no better reason than I found an 8 oz. skein of “Country Rose” yarn at a thrift store. I haven’t crocheted in years, but it’s coming back, and it will help get me away from the computer and my Kindle.

Tis the time of year for making resolutions for next year. I don’t make resolutions, but it’s a good time to make a list of things I would like to accomplish. At the top of the list, of course, is: finish writing and/or editing/revising several WIPs and get them published. Way off on the horizon of possibilities is a vague idea about expanding my little horror story, The Darkest Prison, into a novella. Urban fantasy? That might work.

The other one on that horizon and really too ridiculous to take seriously, is writing a romance. Go ahead and laugh. Until I decided to research the danged things, I’d only read once romance, that I can recall. Now I’ve read two more, and it was a pretty sorry experience. Made much worse by both books having been written by best-selling authors. I don’t know whether the critical standards are really lower than for any other genre, but trying to find examples that I can learn from has been a fairly nauseating experience. It may also have something to do with my total disinterest in the concept of romance and being absolutely appalled at what women will supposedly do to get that all-important man into their lives.

I’ve probably insulted every reader of romances, so it’s time to quit.

NOTE: Unless it’s just a Mac thing, the theme I’m using makes it impossible to see links in my posts. I’d appreciate someone commenting on that.  Offbeat Notes on Writing Fiction is a link.


9 thoughts on “Instead Of

  1. Good luck making it through the rest of the month. And impressive that you tried reading a romance. I don’t think I ever have, unless you count Anne Rice. Is she considered a romance writer?

    I use a PC and couldn’t see the link until I hovered over it. Maybe it’s a “feature” of the WP theme you’re using?

  2. I’ve read a lot of Rice’s books, and I never felt that romance was the central issue, if it was there at all. Maybe that was an aspect that just didn’t stick with me. I know there must be well-written, believable romances out there, but it’s impossible to go by Amazon reviews or ratings. It’s just a side interest at the moment, and very low on the priority list. It would be an interesting challenge, though.

    Since you can’t see the link either, it must be part of the theme. Maybe I’ll emphasize each link somehow. Underline? That would at least set them off from the main text.

  3. You shouldn’t want to write Romance unless there is a specific subtype that you find appealing to READ.

    I admit I didn’t look too deeply into the genre – there seems to be a universal rule of one on one relationships – which wax and wane but don’t get subverted by third parties in quite the way I have in mind.

    Surely there is some kind that you would actually enjoy creating, since you’ve thought of writing one at all. But if you don’t enjoy it, there are better ways to spend your time.

    I remember reading one a long time ago called The Foxes of Harrow that was better in some respects than others (but it did have the tropes of its kind in other areas). I believe it was reasonably well written – maybe I was young and it was just new to me while I was going around chomping on everything.

    Start from one you like. Even if you write a novel in a month (congratulations), it’s still spending a month with those characters.

    1. I never read The Foxes of Harrow, but I’m sure it wasn’t anything like the current mainstream romances. Honestly, after reading three or four (mostly freebies), I couldn’t see much difference between any of them. The notion of writing one was mostly a joke, along the lines of “Surely, I can do better than that,” and “At least there’s a chance of actually making a reasonable amount of money.” After a bit of “research,” I decided I wouldn’t be able to take it seriously enough to want to spend any time doing it. It can make sense to experiment with different genres, but not one that you basically think is a joke.

          1. There’s your answer. A Romance writer can’t wait to write more.

            You’re not a Romance writer.

            Whereas I can’t wait for people to want more of the same thing I’ve produced once. Finding what you want does give you that sweet spot.

            1. Still finding my sweet spot, But nearly there. And you’re right — it *isn’t* romance. Judging from discussions on forums, I think that, for some people, the sweet spot is money, and if they think romance is the best way to get it, that’s what they’ll write.

              1. Well, if they make money at it – then they still have to justify to themselves that they’re earning it in a way they don’t like, so it’s the same as any other disliked day job, only they’ve imposed it on themselves.

                Good luck to them, and glad I don’t have to do that (not that I’d be any good at it).

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