Letting LETTING GO Go

I know this title is confusing, but it’ll make sense in a minute. And for the record, this is a POSITIVE blog.

I received feedback on the first three chapters of my WIP this week, and the information was encouraging and enlightening. There were observations I’ve never heard before, which was great. And much of it confirmed issues I’ve been feeling but couldn’t pin down.

Imagine the opportunity to climb into the mind of a top editor, read their thought processes, understand what they’re looking for, and receive tips on how to achieve what it is you want to create. So many authors write in a bubble then submit, get rejected, and never really know why. I’ve been fortunate to learn now why I would be rejected and what I need that I’m missing.

What I’ve also figured out is that LETTING GO as it is now, the plot and conflict I’ve created, is not a viable story. At least not to be a Single Title Contemporary, which is what I want to write.

I’m not completely giving up on Bryan and Celi and I already have some ideas to transform the story. But for now, I’m moving on. I’ve had several story ideas pop into my head in the last couple years, all of which I’ve pushed to the back until I could finish this first WIP. It’s time to give those stories a chance.

I’m now plotting and developing a new story in preparation for NaNo. It’s set in a small town high school in Ohio (no resemblance to Glee) and comes ready-made with great built-in conflict. I’m excited about starting something new and look forward to making it shine.

Thank you to everyone who visits this blog and cheers me on in this crazy endeavor. And thank you for loving my characters and always having something sweet to say about my writing. As I always say, you can never have too much sunshine shot up your…tookus.

Your turn to share. Anything you’ve given up that you realized you should have let go of a long time ago? Ever have that liberating feeling? Anyone jumping into something new and exciting?

17 thoughts on “Letting LETTING GO Go”

  1. Renee says:

    I started to let go of BTH, but then I realized I hadn’t given it a real fighting chance. I’ve seen things, and I’ve cut things drastically, like 2k in the first chapter. I let go of elements that I had held on to from the beginning.

    Just because I haven’t let go completely doesn’t mean I’m not moving on. I’m doing that too.

    I’m glad to hear you’ve gotten a lot out of the critique. Now if only you could look at other ms’s and see what they’re missing.

    Are you going to sign up and use NaNo? Look for me.

  2. Elyssa Papa says:

    Letting go of a book is never easy to do. I speak from experience of burying two books under the bed, but doing so improved me as a writer in ways I couldn’t imagine. Heartache makes you stronger. There’s a Chinese proverb that states basically: Fall down seven, stand up eight.

    You’re standing up and taking what you learned from your first book for your second. No one can ever take that away from you.

  3. TerriOsburn says:

    Renee – You’re always moving forward and have accomplished so much. In fact, you’re one of the reasons there are no excuses for the rest of us. 🙂

    I don’t know that it’s so much giving up on the story as wanting to start with a clean slate and see if I can make it work. And my guess is what I learn writing something else will help me fix this first one.

  4. TerriOsburn says:

    Ely – It may sound like rationalizing to others, but I did learn a ton trying to write this book without ever making it to THE END. And I’ve never stopped learning through reading, workshops, craft books, and just talking to other writers.

    But sometimes, you just have to quit chasing your tail, ya know? LOL!

  5. TerriOsburn says:

    Renee – I forgot to say I am going to sign up on the NaNo site. I’ve looked at it briefly and I admit it intimidates you. And I have to wonder, if you’re on the connecting with all kinds of people, when do you have time to bang out 50K words?! LOL! I’m already going to have trouble with my regular internet activities.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I have to say, I’m a little saddened at the thought of not reading more Celi and Bryan in the future, but I totally understand why you’re letting the WIP go. It’s always hard though. I am looking forward though to reading your future projects. Who knows, maybe you’ll unearth Letting Go after you’ve had a slew of books published and realize that Letting Go deserves a chance. If JQ could do it, so can you!

    D

  7. If it feels right to let go, then it is right. Learning to trust your insticts is I think one of the biggest steps to being a working writer that there is. It doesn’t mean you won’t get back to the first and you’re right, what you learn from the next project will help with this one.

    Good luck on the NaNo! You know, I was thinking the same thing about how, when connecting with other writers, do you get the time to get the 50,000 words in? LOL Distractions or motivation by accountability is an interesting balance to achieve!

  8. Renee says:

    I don’t do a lot of busy connecting. I can see how others are progressing through their word meter and if I see then need their butts kicked I step in. I also love the word wars, it speaks to the competitor in me. If this is your first time, just ease into it.

  9. TerriOsburn says:

    I signed up today, but I can’t find anyone I know to connect with. And I’m not sure I understand where you give your word counts. I see where you post the whole thing and it counts for you, but it says something about only being able to do that for the last week? I’m so confused. LOL!

  10. Janga says:

    Terri, I think it takes courage to let go of a story you’ve invested so much of yourself in. Good for you! I’ll miss Celi and Bryan, but I do like the sound of the new story.

    I’m signed up for NaNoWriMo too, and I too am lost. I’ve been trying to figure out how to add writing buddies, but I’m stumped. And I still haven’t decided if I’m going to use NaNo to work on Who Says You Can’t Go Home?–Saja and Brodie’s story–or whether to write something completely new. I have an idea for a category based on the image of a young woman posting a “For Sale by Owner” sign on the lawn of a new house. I’ll have to make a choice this week.

  11. Tris says:

    It’s saddening to know that we won’t be hearing more about Bryan and Celi – we’ve been such a long way with them. But as always, if there is no end then how would there be a new beginning?

    It’s so good to hear you’re doing NaNa. It’s really fun =P

    If I remember correctly from last year, during the month all you need is enter numerically how many words you’ve written. It’s only for verification is it that you enter the whole ms for verification =D

    As for buddies… Janga, I think you just need to search the author’s name and then add them as a buddy =)

  12. TerriOsburn says:

    Hey, Melissa! Sorry I missed you earlier. I really do feel like this WIP was a two year writing exercise and now I can apply what I’ve learned. I’ve been plotting all day am I’m liking what I have so far.

    Janga – We need to find each other. I’m BosunTerriO over there. If you search for me with that user name or screen name or whatever, you should find me.

    Renee – I tried looking for you with no luck.

    Tris – I do feel like I’m letting you all down since you’ve been following this saga for a while. But it really became clear it was time to move on. All the signs were there, so to speak.

    And I did figure out that little box at the top where I can enter my word count. I know if I spend enough time on the site, I’ll figure it out. I just better do it before Nov 1. LOL!

  13. Beth says:

    I’m going to miss Celi and Bryan too, but after you have a couple of books under your belt maybe you will want to revisit them in a short story. Anyway you cut it though you learned a lot from those two. I’m glad you a moving on to something else, I will look forward to hearing all about that.

  14. irisheyes says:

    I think it’s pretty smart Ter. Sometimes the hardest thing but the best thing is to just let go! That goes with just about anything, IMHO. At least with Bryan and Celi you’re not saying goodbye forever just for now. You can always re-visit if the spirit moves you.

    You go girl!!!!

  15. TerriOsburn says:

    Beth – I don’t think this is goodbye forever either. Someday I’ll come back to them. And their story will be better for the hiatus.

    Irish – I sometimes worry that I walk away from things too much. It is a pattern in my life. Something I prefer not to spend too much time analyzing. 🙂

  16. MsHellion says:

    As anyone who knows me, I don’t let ANYTHING go. So don’t bother asking me too.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*