First of all I have to say, again, I'm a rather big fan of Laura Jarratt and I think I'll love anything she writes. My review for Skin Deep, Laura's first novel, said 'it's a story people should pay attention too' and Laura is an author to be reckoned with!
I'm so excited to be involved with this tour and would like to say thank to Laura for the following post:~
Why the first 10k is always the hardest.
Quite often you meet writers who are really enthusiastic about starting their new books, as if they absolutely can’t wait to begin. When I start a new book I’m afraid I look more like I’m about to face a firing squad. I hate beginning a new book and it takes me at least 10k before I feel I’ve got any idea what I’m doing. To be honest I’m uncomfortable for the first third of the book and it’s only when I get to the last third that I start to relax.
So what’s the problem? Basically it’s that I’m not a ‘plot it all in advance’ kind of writer. And what that means is I’m starting a book from scratch with very little idea of what is going to happen, who the secondary characters will be, and indeed who the main characters really are. I usually have a scene in my head from which the rest of the book comes, but that’s about it. So what happens is I have to pick up a pen and start writing. Now that’s great fun when you don’t have a deadline to meet, but when you do and you’re under contract, it’s a lot more stressful having no idea what you’re doing!
Somewhere in those first 10k I learn about who my main characters are as people, and totally crucially as I often write in first person, I find their voices. This part takes forever. I can be messing around with the opening of a book for a couple of months and feel like I’m getting nowhere at all. I’ve just done that with the one I’m writing now. And then suddenly from nowhere I realised I was telling the story in the wrong way – the mc wanted it done differently so I had to go back and rewrite the entire thing. My family ignore me now when they ask how the writing is going and I tell them it’s awful and this book is hopeless etc. Somewhere around the end of the first draft I tend to decide it’s really not that bad at all, but until I’m reasonably happy with that first 10k I just can’t go on writing the rest. I know some writers give up on the beginning and go back and fix it later but for me it has to be right for me to carry on any further.
And the strangest thing of all? Often I don’t really make that many changes to what I originally wrote in those early pages at all. I guess the hard part is finding the entire book from within them.
I'm in the middle of reading Louder than Words and look forward to sharing my review with you all soon! I must thank Laura & Jenny for allowing us to be involved in this fabulous blog tour. Be sure to check out the other blogs for more posts by Laura.