Monday, September 22, 2008

The new story thrill...

I'm working on a new story--a vampire one. :-) Lately, my stories seem to focus on shifters and demons, so I thought I'd go a bit old school (for me, anyway) and do a vamp tale now.

The first paranormal book that I ever sold was a vampire story, THE VAMPIRE'S KISS. So, since that book was the one to get me a publishing break, I guess you could say I definitely have a soft spot for vampires.

But, back to the new story...I completed my last novel and I'm now free and clear to start a new tale. I haven't plotted this one out yet; instead, I'm going where the characters take me. Whenever I start a new story, I'm both thrilled...and scared as hell.

Thrilled...because, yeah, a new story is always fun. So many possibilities.

Scared as hell...because....seriously, a book? 400+pages? When I stare at the blank page before me and I know that I have to write an entire novel, my stomach knots. I generally try to ignore the knots and after a while, I just forget them entirely. (I haven't reached the "forget them" phase yet with this book!)

Now, when I open a new book that I'm reading (as opposed to the drama I get when I start writing a book), my feelings are completely different. No knotted stomach, just wild anticipation. I can't wait to see where a writer will take me.

What about you? If you're a writer, how do you feel when you stare at that first blank page? And, as a reader, how do you feel when you open a new book? What do you expect?

Cynthia Eden
EVERLASTING BAD BOYS--Available now from Kensington Brava
MIDNIGHT SINS--Available 11/25/08 from Kensington Brava
Believe in monsters. They believe in you.



Blogger Edie said...

I'm going to start a new book soon, and I have the "gulp" feeling about it. It's a scary thing, making a book from nothing but a few nebulous thoughts.

I read a book this last weekend by one of my favorite writers. I was really looking forward to it, but before reading it, I was critiquing for my CP. So my mind was still in critique mode, and I kept seeing ways to tighten up the writing, etc.

I was so glad when that little critique devil slunk off to its cave so I could enjoy the book. Flawed though it might have been, it was still a great read!

September 22, 2008 at 7:27 AM  
Blogger SaturnMoonie said...

Hmm, good question. I'm working on my first novel (it's a contemporary romance), and when I got the idea and began writing it, I was super excited. Up until this point I've only written short stories and poems, and the fact that my brain just thought this was the next step for me to take made me feel nice. :) But then as my fingers slowly came to a halt on my keyboard, I began doubting myself and obsessing about all the writing I was going to have to do. I kept checking word count to see how many words I'd written so far (not a good thing since I kept psyching myself out). So now there are days where I second-guess myself: Am I good enough of a writer to do this? Do I have the discipline to write 50,000 words (EEEK!) and so on and so forth. But in the end, I try to take it one day at a time and and set small goals for myself (like finishing the chapter I'm on, or taking my characters into the next phase of the story, that sort of stuff), and then I hear that little voice in my head telling me that maybe I can do this. So yup, thrilling, and scary for me so far...

As a reader, it's ALWAYS thrilling to start a new book. It means new adventure, new characters to fall in love with (or hate). :D

September 22, 2008 at 7:38 AM  
Blogger Rhon said...

Scared as hell sums it up completely for me too *g*. Seriously, write an entire book? Yeah I always have that feeling, and I'm such a panster that it takes me a good fifty or sixty pages to get to know the characters enough to feel comfortable (at all!).

To start reading something new always feels like a new adventure, I love being sucked in!

September 22, 2008 at 8:11 AM  
Blogger Cynthia Eden said...

Edie, I am so glad you brought up the critique devil! Sometimes, I'll read and I find myself not doing it just for fun, instead, I start noticing repeated phrases and POV issues and I know that I'm not in the right frame of mind. But, it's kinda hard to turn off right after I've been editing my own work.

Hi, saturnmoonie! Congrats on writing your first novel! That's fabulous. I am at the point now where I think pretty much all writers have doubt about stories. It's just part of our writing life. But I believe the way you're going--one step at a time, meeting your goals--is the absolute best way to write. Thanks so much for sharing your techniques!

Rhon, I think we might be just alike! I don't usually feel like I have any idea where my book is heading until about page 50 or 60; so, even when my agent needs a synopsis, I write the first 60 pages first, then do the synopsis so I can know what's going to happen with, um, greater certainty (cause my story will still change by the time I'm done).

September 22, 2008 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger MsValerie said...

Cynthia...Thanks for your wonderful books!

I'm a reader. When I open a new book, I try not to expect anything but good writing and an engaging story.

September 22, 2008 at 10:28 AM  
Blogger Cynthia Eden said...

Thank you, msvalerie! :-) I absolutely love that expectation.

September 22, 2008 at 3:14 PM  
Blogger Yolanda Sfetsos said...

Hi Cynthia! Very cool post.

Well, as a writer, starting that first page always feels exciting when I'm preparing to start. Then, when I open a brand new Doc, I get a little nervous because like you said, Yikes, blank page! But as soon as I get stuck into the story, I stop thinking about the actual pages and concentrate on getting my word count goal and letting the story take its course.

I'm an organic writer too, so I get to a point where the story just sorta clicks. :)

When I'm a reader, the first page is an exciting thing to tackle.

September 22, 2008 at 11:53 PM  
Blogger Cynthia Eden said...

Hi, Yolanda! I think I finally reached that clicking point last night. It took me 52 pages, but I think I'm there (though I am strongly considering changing my opening line...).

September 23, 2008 at 7:43 AM  

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