Saturday, April 17, 2010

Breaking Up With A Novel

You know when it’s time. If you don’t, go check out Five Signs It’s Time to Step Away From Your WIP on annastan’s blog.

I’ve been with a particular novel for seven years. I admit I’ve cheated on this novel during those seven years, in fact, I’m cheating now. The bad part is, I’m completely in love with a new WIP.

This new WIP is shiny and beautiful and exciting. I think that’s the main problem. My old novel is . . . well, old. It still thrills me, but I know it so well that there are no surprises. No spontaneity.

When we first started out there were surprises and excitement. With each revision, there were new levels to explore and our bond deepened. The novel changed over the last seven years. I forced it to change whether it wanted to or not (I’m demanding that way). Most of those changes are for the better, but some of them might not be.

Still, I always seem to come back to the old novel.  Even while involved with a new WIP, I continued to visit the old novel. The old novel knew I was cheating. How could it not? But it also knew I came back. Because I loved it. I still love it. I always will love it, but the first blush of love is over.

And now a shiny new WIP is demanding more of my attention. Shiny new WIP wants to be exclusive, and I kind of want to be exclusive right now too. The passion I have for new WIP is much stronger than the pull of old novel.

This isn’t to say I won’t ever go back to old novel. I’m sure we’ll visit again sometime. But I think it will be more like old friends.

Old novel’s file will sit on my computer, but I won’t open it. I may wave at it as I click on new WIPs file, but I won’t open old novel’s file. Not now, and not for a long, long time.

It’s time to break up and move on. I have another couple of novels I need to break up with too so I can devote my time to new WIP . . . at least for a while. I’ll still see more of the other WIPs than I do of old novel (they still have some changing to do), but I’ll be seeing much less of them than I have been so far.

New WIP is calling and I must answer.

Write on.


Blee Bonn said...

It's definitely hard to break up with those novels! I've gone through it a couple of times.

Have fun and good luck with the new WIP!

Angela said...

Well, even if you break up you can "still be friends"

My kids are in love with one of my old novels...I keep promising to get back together with it and fix it up. But, like you I'm working on new projects that I "love more"

Still...out of sight does not equal out of mind for some projects!!

just Joan said...

Thanks, Blee Bonn.

You're right, Angela, the old novel and I will always be friends. ;-) I think I'll go back to the old novel eventually (I always do), but the new relationship is much more fun . . . until it isn't. LOL