Tuesday, March 09, 2010

Blogiversary Re-post #7: Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

I love this old post, from February 12, 2007, for personal reasons: it was when I flipped the switch and changed my writing life, turning completely from historicals to YA. I dropped a book on Isabella of Castile I had 9,000 words on, because I was starting to hate it, and I just didn't feel I wanted to write that way anymore. So I had a long talk with a friend, and posted this after making my decision. The VERY next day I wrote out the starting point and characters for JENNA, and found my voice.

There are some big changes going on...in my head. {s}

On Friday I took a hard look at what I'm doing--what my writing goals are, what I'm passionate about, what kind of career I want to build. And what's not working for me now. With the help of a good friend, I realized that if I want to change course I need to do it NOW, before I get stuck on a track I don't want to be on.

In short, writing historicals isn't making me happy right now; it's making me UNhappy. I dread the research, I'm bored with characters whose lives I already know, in a world I can't experience yet have to stick to. I feel like I'm writing with both hands tied behind my back, and it's stopped being fun.

I'm yearning to write something of my own, a story that's wholly mine. Where I don't have to stick to a script--I make up the script. Where I can include elements that excite me, where I can let go and use my real voice, instead of trying to re-create someone long dead.

And I was thinking, la la la, I can write this new book, in a new genre for me, and still try to sell TMT.


If I sell it--and I still think that I could, if I spent some time really improving it--I will be expected to write historicals for a good long time, to build my career. And I don't want to do that.

I made a list of all the things I love to read about, to think about. Of the things that I love from my favorite authors of all time (the humor of Douglas Adams; the other worlds of Susan Cooper; the adventure and pacing of Mary Stewart, etc.). And folks, I am going My Own Way.

So you will see a change already in the blog...the Book 2 counter is gone. The references to historical fiction are gone. And guess what--instead of that medieval lady over there in the profile that I was hiding behind? There's me. (Well, a cartoon representation of me, but that's the closest you get for now.)

And the Medieval Word of the Day? That was nice, wasn't it? But I'm sorry, that has to go too.

My word of the day: transform: To change the form of; to change into another shape or form; to metamorphose.


Linda G. said...

I do kind of miss the medieval word of the day. That was cool. :)

Susan Adrian said...

It's a good thing I stopped, though--we lost access to the OED shortly after that!

Such a SIGN. :)

Elisabeth Black said...

I didn't know you used to write historical fiction. I wondered about that snippet, though. I'm so glad you found the right path for you.

Portia said...

It's really inspiring to hear your evolution as a writer here--in your own words, no less! :-)

Susan Adrian said...

Elisabeth: Aha! Makes more sense now, y? Though I'm kind of cheating, because without realizing it I was really writing YA historical fiction. So...change, yes, but not quite as much as it could be.

Portia: Yay! Thanks!