The Path is Long and Winds in Mysterious Ways

In November, I wrote a novel as part of NaNoWriMo 2009. The ideas for this book had been germinating for nearly two years before I sat down and actually wrote the stinking 60,000 words saved on my computer right now. Following this literary marathon, I was in dire need of a rest. So, I rested. For several weeks now, I’ve been itching to get back to this story, but at a bit of a loss regarding what to do with it. Editing is no problem – I am a fantastic editor. I virtually have a magic wand that transforms paragraphs and finds synonyms with the merest flick of the wrist. Unfortunately, I need to revise, rework… and figure a bunch of stuff out beyond the usual realm of an “edit”.

Some of this stuff is so basic that it is overwhelming. The primary question that I need to solve is one of perspective, or point-of-view. When I wrote this book, I used an omniscient (but not all-revealing) 3rd person POV. There is a lot of he said, she said. I tell the story instead of show the story. Lots and lots of description. You get the picture. This is not how I want it to be… but I am having trouble deciding if I want one main character to tell the story… or … what. Am I talented enough to make the narrative style work ala Anna Karenina? Even if I stick with this perspective, I still feel I need to narrow the focus to a couple of main characters, instead of bouncing between the dozen children in the story. If I do pick a single main character, I am leaning toward the female I modeled somewhat loosely after myself. Is this a mistake? It seems a little juvenile to write a book about a fantasy “you”.

Speaking of juvenile, this book is designed for younger readers. The question of audience is a bit mysterious to me, because I was not a typical child or young adult reader. My style of writing, although not out of grasp for a child, is fairly complex and my original thought was that a 9-12 reader would be entertained by the story and would be able to use the book to ‘grow’, learning unfamiliar terms through context clues and what not. After looking at a sampling of books written for the same audience, I’m worried I’ve placed myself out of the age bracket and would be more appropriate for older readers who then, in turn, may find the characters and their development lacking in sophistication (ie there are no hot and heavy romances or anything like that).

Anyway, the biggest issue is that of the POV. I’ve done some editing, but mostly the whole thing needs to be rewritten from whatever perspective I choose. I think the story has merit, and I’m willing to put in the time. I know what drudgery and hard work this will be but I think the payoff could be worth it. I suppose I’m at that moment where I should just pick something and go with it.

Any thoughts? Any one?

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3 thoughts on “The Path is Long and Winds in Mysterious Ways

  1. I bought this cute little book that I think might be helpful. If you want to email me your address I’ll send you a copy of it. I know you’re more advanced than I am in the book writing world, but it might help some. I thought it had a lot of good info and I liked the way it was presented.

      • Well I write the whole blog from my blackberry, so that hasn’t been an issue, but when trying to organize an actual story it’s harder on that little screen. I need my new laptop ASAP!! I just figured out how to get the rest of the book off my old laptop’s hard drive, so once I have that new Mac I’ll be back in business!

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