Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I'm being Eggers-ized!

Dave Eggers is affecting my writing! Must... not... be... Eggers-ized!

I do terribly in trying to write outlines. I realize that I just have to go and vomit out the story in a first draft, even if its terrible. That way I know what I'm writing about and how it ends and how it gets to where it ends.

A novel might be an ambitious undertaking.

Also, even though I'm completely taken by these characters, the voice is so not me, that I'm not sure I would want it to be the first novel I write. You kind of want to be enamored with your language in addition to your characters, you know? But maybe I can pull off both.

But I kinda always wanted to write a beautiful lyrical novel, and yet right now I'm writing a novel from a 30-something year old male, first person POV taking place in the present. Hmm. Well, for now I guess I'll just spit out the plot first. We can deal with style and voice later.

[I'm thinking the problem is how much "guy" reading I'm doing recently as opposed to female stuff... although I always did intend for this story to be first person from this dude... bleh.]

I don't know. Decisions, decisions.

Anyways, on to Eggers - I really do like his writing when he STAYS IN CHARACTER, because it's funny and hilarious and shows how neurotic he is, and I love his rambly daydreams and his neverending guilt whenever he leaves Toph alone, and how it shows he's this kid himself trying to figure it all out, and how he's having growing pains of his own but growing pains watching his little brother grow up too. I mean, the narrative is awesome, the story is great, it's hysterical and off-the-wall, and I can truly, truly appreciate ALL of that. I just really wish it were a little bit more condensed, and I REALLY wish he would stop the breaking out of character thing. Not a fan. The rest of it is wonderful, it really is. It's best when he has these scenes with his brother, or these scenes when he's thinking about his brother and all the terrible things that might happen or how much he misses his brother because now he's having a social life and all that. The magazine stuff, eh, not as into, but it does help illustrate what life's like while he's gone from his brother. But again, feel like it could have been edited to make it a little tighter.

I have about 80 pages left, but I really wanted to say that while I still remembered. By the time I reach the end, I probably won't have much to say.

Um, I'm writing too much personal writing-related as opposed to book-related stuff lately. I really need to curb that.

2 drops:

moonrat said...

it's funny--i know we've talked about this before, but i LOVE outlines. without them, nothing goes forward. i even make outlines for my blog posts (you can probably guess which ones--they end up obscenely long).

also, it's your blog so you're free to talk about whatever you want. nb the high sushi content of my blog.

angelle said...

i can't deal with outlines. not because i don't like to be organized (because i do, i really do, it would make my life a million times easier), but because i don't know what i'm going to write until i've written it. i usually have an ending in mind, a vague premise, and that's about it. the middle is all blurry and it's up to my on-the-fly imagination come up with how to get to the end. that's why my first drafts are often just word vomit -- it's like pulling teeth the first time around because i don't really know where it's going. my favorite part of the process is the second draft, once i've got it all figured out. then i can go back and rewrite and make it work, voice, style, dialogue, tweaking the plot points now that i know the story. i feel like first draft is always discovery, an archaelogical dig in a way. [this is kinda how i wrote my college papers too... i never knew exactly what my thesis was until i wrote the damn essay. then i had to go back and tweak everything to fit it]

perhaps you can tell my posts have no outlines except the ones in my head, as they ramble and go on for too long.

i know, i know. i was just trying to not be so personal on my blog for once and stay focused on BOOKS. and author stalking.

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