Making the Book Sing: ROW80

You will probably notice a theme here that I get inspired by music. This last week, I have felt tired and achy from my lingering case of mononucleosis and uninspired when I looked at how my WIP was unfolding — like a badly wadded napkin. It was time to seek some inspiration, regroup, and develop a better plan. Part of that involved a conversation with hubby, some writing quotes, and moving some scenes around.

Today I worked again on my young adult novel, Sharing Hunter — which is a plot idea I love with characters whose stories I’m eager to tell. Thus far, the scenes I’d written were blah. I want to get back to not just telling the story but being a storyteller. Anyone can tell a story, just like anyone can belt out a song. But a storyteller uses interesting language, description, and dialog to pull the audience in, just as a singer (say, like Whitney Houston) uses the same notes everyone else gets but makes them resonate with beauty. I want my novel to sing.

So here’s a little musical inspiration for me from Straight No Chaser.

This is what I want — to remember that there is skill, flourish, fun, and interaction involved in writing a book. I got excited today as I edited the scenes and started to see the words weaving together like a song’s harmony to tell the story and entertain the reader. I think I’m back on track now.

Here are my goals for ROW80 Round 1 of 2012:

  • Finish editing Grace & Fire mystery novel and send to reader. Check. Finished this goal on January 19.
  • Write 1,500 words per week on young adult novel, Sharing Hunter. Still reworking the few scenes I’ve written. I felt early on that I was off track and didn’t want to continue with less-than-exciting writing. So I regrouped and am going through what I’ve already written to make it sing.
  • Blog twice a week on Amaze-ing Words Wednesday and Deep-Fried Friday, and check-in with ROW80 updates twice a week. Check. Posted Quoth the Writer & ROW80 on Sunday and A Lesson from Miss Spelling on Wednesday.
  • Comment on at least 10 15 blogs per week (not counting ROW80 update comments). Check. Commented on 17 blogs.
  • Read one writing craft book. Check. Finished On Writing by Stephen King.
  • Read eight fiction books. 5 down, reading The Cat, the Lady and the Liar (a cozy mystery) by Leann Sweeney.

I have some fabulous fellow ROWers. Check them out HERE.

How’s your week going? Are you making your WIP sing? Do you need a little inspiration? Where do you go to get it?

14 thoughts on “Making the Book Sing: ROW80

  1. I want to check out Stephen King’s “On Writing” since I’ve heard so many good things about it. My WIP isn’t singing ATM… but some of the short stories are! I don’t seem to be able to control what’s going to come out of me at any particular moment.

  2. You’re doing very well for mid-week check in! Nice 😉
    At the moment, I’m inspired by the song Taylor Swift wrote for the Hunger Games movie: Safe and Sound. So neat. You should check it out.
    Have a great rest of the week!

  3. Julie, I don’t have mono as an excuse, but my inspiration too has been flagging lately. But you have inspired me today and reminded me WHY I want to write. Thanks. I needed that!!!!

  4. You are doing great, and I love what you say about making it sing like Whitney Houston. People can sing, well unless you are watching too much American Idol (then you’ll start to wonder!), but few can give you chills.

    1. I’ve never seen a complete episode of American Idol! But I have seen clips that made me think “Really? You think you can sing?” I don’t want to look at my WIP and say to myself, “Really? You think you can write?” LOL. Thanks,Tia!

  5. Did you like On Writing? I need to read more, I’m always so busy I never seem to have time to read anymore. Good job on keeping up with your goals.

    1. Good question, Alica. I hate to be the one naysayer out there, but no, I didn’t like On Writing much. There were some valuable tips, but they were surrounded by Stephen King telling all about himself. Maybe it didn’t strike me as deeply because I’m not a King fan. Thanks for the encouragement!

  6. My books don’t “sing” until they’ve gone through a revision and polish. (Hopefully they do *after* that!) I find music inspiring too, especially old progressive rock or some artful electronic music. You’re making great progress, especially dealing with mono! Keep up the great work!

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