Apr. 7th, 2007

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Seeing Is Believing started as an attempt for a short story (my second attempt in the class) in the Gotham Writers' short story class through Barnes and Noble a couple years ago. Umm, I really need to remember that I can't do prework for short stories. They don't stay that way. The one before this became not one but two novels (When She Calls has been written) and so far two short stories (one of which critters tell me is a novel :)).

This particular story is science fiction set on the Earth about 300 years from now. We have devoted all of humanity's resources to surviving a passive alien invasion and have become so focused on surviving that the idea of prevention has long slipped our minds. Or at least the minds of the majority.

Yeah, I have the strangest ideas sometimes :). Oh, and to make it all clear...it was inspired because of Lasik and a childhood of Highlights (c) Hidden Pictures.

The book started out with a simple message. "Don't become so focus on the day to day that you forget to plan for the future " sums up the concept pretty well.

Then I started writing. It's a coming of age novel where a young man has to discover not only that what his mother has told him since his father's death isn't quite the full picture, but that he has a choice as to what he'll do with that knowledge. Themes include the cost of denial, the aggrandizement of one group of people over the rest until the value of humanity's diversity is lost (and I don't mean racially; it's all skills based), the need to take a stand rather than sit back and accept what is the norm not because it's true but because it's comfortable, and half a dozen other things.

That might make it sound disconnected, but so far it isn't writing up that way. All the themes blend together and make Brian miserable :). Ah the life of a master of worlds.

This is not my normal type of anthropological SF, though it has elements of the same, and it's set on Earth, something I usually don't do, and it's complicated (okay, that part's right up my alley ;)).

And to make matters worse, I started writing with only a partial outline in order to participate in a writing challenge I do each year, Forward Motion's March Madness. At some point I need to drop back and fix the outline, but for the moment the ride's been interesting. I know the big picture movements, just not the step by step I usually prefer. I write 6k or longer outlines and craft the novel as I outline. This crafting while writing is new...and old...to me. Personally, I prefer doing this part in the outline, but I'm not going to stop the story until I have to.

Oh, and even more? I've written a partial scene and an almost complete scene out of sequence, something else that is not normal for me. The partial has already been swept into the novel which is now about 38k, but the complete scene comes much later in the story.


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Margaret McGaffey Fisk

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