Sunday, October 17, 2010

I'm Not a Loyal Writer

I keep cheating on a project with another.

Sometimes, I hear of old couples writers who've worked on a single novel for a decade or more, and I wonder how they do it. My love is fickle, and early after I finish the first draft of a WiP, I have ideas for another. (Yes, for NaNoers, I have year long plot bunnies)

"Come write us," they say. "We're new and sexy shiny. We'll be better than what you have right now."

I find it hard not to fall into the trap. Sometimes I'll note the idea down, hoping to revisit it later, but the excitement and inspiration is gone by then. So I move on to new WiPs all the time, afraid I'll lose the perfect idea while it's there. It's why I four complete first drafts from my last two years, and two more to be rewritten. I only stopped to edit once.

This year, I'm trying something different. I'll be writing two stories during NaNoWriMo, and I hope that by alternating between the two, I can keep the other ideas away. I need focus, or I'll never get anywhere!

Am I alone in this? How many of you have troubles sticking to one project? And how many of you only write one novel and stick with it?  (For the record, I think both are fine)


  1. Good luck keeping the plot bunnies away. Might I suggest getting a writer's block dog to help? :)

    I've always got new ideas for stories, and I welcome them (well, not during Nov of course, but all other months of the year). I'll usually write down some notes, maybe a scene or two, maybe the first couple chapters even, and then move on. If it really sticks I can always come back and work on it later. And it's better to have too many ideas than too few!

  2. Well, I've come back and reworked on ideas before and, with one notable exception (my current WiP, in fact), it hasn't worked out so well. I think I managed to rekindle the original rush because my initial idea was of a setting, not plot and characters.

    But you're right! I prefer to have too many ideas than too few. I just have to learn and deal with it. ;)

  3. I have, on occasion, let wispy new ideas take control. It's hard not to, it's like the lust phase that you may have moved out of on your current WiP. I haven't yet seen a WiP into complete fruition, though... so I am not a good example!!! Bad Lindsey!