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self-conscious about novel idea

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Giovanni, Aug 19, 2018.

  1. Giovanni

    Giovanni Acolyte

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    This is going to come off as rambling more than anything else. But its been on my mind and I feel like I have to share it, for my own sake.

    For the past couple days I have been working on a light (or young adult) type of fantasy novel because I enjoy reading them. It was hard to get used to the simplistic language (especially while reading a Dan Abnett novel at the same time) and the bizarre situations that somehow lead to JRPG type plots/settings, or something similar. But I absolutely adore the characters in those types of novels and look at them novels for what they are, rather than criticizing them the same way I would other books.

    Needless to say that I came up with an idea (I'm a pantser btw) similar to the LN's that I have read and I was quite satisfied with it. But recently I had watched a few parody videos criticizing light novels, and those videos were pretty much spot on despite them being parodies.

    After watching them I started feeling a little self-conscious. Then I watched Citizen Kane pretty much right after feeling these doubts about my story. In short Citizen Kane is a masterpiece, it completely destroyed my perspective of a good story and the way one is presented. It made me think the premise and idea of my story or the stories that I like in general are a joke.

    The problem is I'm having fun writing this YA novel and I truly want to make well written characters, as well as an interesting plot. The pros about writing this particular novel is that it's easy, fast, I know who my audience is and I'm generally more motivated to write it more than anything else that I have tried.

    However I question myself, like saying "Can i write to my true potential with an idea as cookie cutter as this?" "Is writing a YA novel just an excuse for a lack of creativity?" "How is my story going to differ from the many that are already out there."

    I'm having trouble trying to convince myself to continue writing this novel despite my enjoyment in writing it.
     
  2. Vaporo

    Vaporo Sage

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    It's been said time and time again: Ideas are not sacred. It's execution that counts. Think about Star Wars. At its core, it's a very typical hero's journey coming-of-age story. However, it's executed so well that it's become a cultural icon.

    If you enjoy writing it, it will show. And if it turns out bad, no big deal. Just set it aside, work on something else for a while, and come back to it when you have some more ideas and experience.
     
  3. Penpilot

    Penpilot Staff Article Team

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    Write the story you want to write. Worry about it's potential and how good it will be later. Cause honestly, the first draft is going to fall short, probably very short of being anything near good. A lot of the heavy lifting is done when you edit.

    IMHO, if it's a story you love, write it. Don't judge it. Don't question it. Don't compare it. It may turn out crap. It may turn out to be a masterpiece, but who cares. What matters is the story and that you stay true to what you're trying to say with the story. Maybe that message is trite. Maybe it's deep as deep can be. But you never know until you actually write, edit, and finish the darn thing.

    It's hard enough to finish a novel normally. Don't make it any harder by putting unnecessary expectations onto the story and onto yourself. I mean seriously, you just sized up your story next to Citizen Kane. Most of the stories in the word are going to pale in comparison, even ones that are tremendously popular and made lots of money. IMHO, relax. Enjoy the ride. It's going to be bumpy, probably really bumpy, but it'll be worth it, regardless of where things end up.

    It's the journey, not the destination and all that jazz.
     
  4. Destroy the idea that writing has to be Super Meaningful and Intellectual™. You like it. It's fun. That's literally all that matters. If you think it's fun, probably someone else will think it's fun. And then you both will get to have fun! Does that not make it worth it?
     
  5. A. E. Lowan

    A. E. Lowan Staff Leadership

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    Also, write the story you want to read. If this is a genre you enjoy, sally forth! The entire point of this game is to have fun and love what you do. Don't worry about Citizen Kane. Yes, it's a masterpiece and it probably has some lessons to teach you about storytelling, but it is not the stick by which all other stories are measured. It's just a damn fine story. Go out and write your own. You're too early in the game to be fussing. Just write.
     
  6. Mythopoet

    Mythopoet Auror

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    First, if you are having fun writing then CHERISH THAT FEELING. Do not cast it aside because you think you need to write something more literary. Think of your target audience. YA readers DO NOT want to read Citizen Kane. They want to read something fun and accessible and interesting. I mean, a huge percentage of the YA audience is adults who are sick of dark and difficult adult books and just want book they can actually enjoy and relax with. Maybe I'm wrong, because I've never watched it, but whenever I see someone talk about Citizen Kane I think, "God, how dull and boring and pretentious."
     
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