Saturday, October 2, 2010

The finer things club

I imagine a lot of authors start out with about a bazillion ideas for their books. Maybe a bazillion and one. And the process from there I imagine is somewhat like gold panning. Sifting through countless grains of muddy earth for the little nuggets of ideas that will move people through the bookstores.

I feel like where I'm at right now is at the beginning, wondering where to start looking to find my nuggets. And I feel like I've been grabbing handfuls of dirt and sifting through them that way, maybe finding something, maybe finding nothing. And each handful is all over the place. One over here, one over there, and each little nugget is a story, an idea. But I think that perhaps, for the scale I'd like to go for, that my scope is too narrow, that I'm starting small and then packing up and moving to a different location and trying my luck there. I need to broaden my horizons and really open up my ideas, to bring them together, to let them work to my advantage.

This all comes with practice and refinery. Efficiency. Gradually working outwards. I start with a couple of handfuls of dirt and sift. I work outwards, more, sifting dirt for nuggets of gold, I start with a small handfuls of ideas, and gather a few more, but nothing remotely close to a bazillion.

Or maybe, as a young writer, with lots of experience still to gather, I'm dwarfed by the many success stories out there, how these people must work so hard on one thing for so long until it appears so refined and effortless and genuine, 24 carat gold bullion.

I have ideas, I don't think that's a problem at all, but I think the real trick, the real illusion comes in putting those ideas into motion.

On an unrelated note: On my frequent passing across the internet, I've noticed two titles that have recently come into print that I am looking forward to getting my mitts onto. The first being "Dreadnought", the second novel in Cherie Priest's Clockwork Century steampunk series. The first novel, Boneshaker, was simply amazing. I had to order it in, and while I hope Dreadnought will be more easily accessible, I'll order this one in too if I have to. The second is Scott Westerfeld's "Behemoth". Sequel to Leviathan. It's another steampunk title, set around the first world war, and while I found Leviathan to be less captivating than Boneshaker, it's more of a book you read for fun, for entertainment. I guess I'd say the Leviathan series is to Steampunk as Harry Potter is to fantasy. Sort of. Whereas the Clockwork Century is set in an adult's world, dealing with more mature issues than you'd expect from reading the blurb of the books. It's got me sort of back into the excitement of steampunk, if not as much as last year, but I'll probably have a few more words to say when I read the books, but after my last year's NaNoWriMo steampunk novel, I doubt I'll try anything like it again for quite a while.

No comments:

Post a Comment