After a celebratory vacation (yes, my family uses vacations to celebrate life events like graduations and birthdays) and a magnum opus of a paper (okay 20 pages isn't that long, but it sure feels like a tome when you don't have the hours upon hours to dedicate to it that you should have), I'm finally falling back into a gentle writing mode. I've just got my characters through another near death experience and now they need to travel the rest of their journey to find out the shocking truths that await them.
As my "technically" fourth novel to date (the other three are complete but not publishable until strong revisions come their way) this book is surprising me with its chosen genre (who thought I'd write horror?) and its shocking twists that I didn't plan in advance (I can only outline so much, at some point the story develops its own unique aspects - whether or not I want it to). One thing that isn't surprising is how limited the characters feel. I need to work on making them more dynamic, but this is a flaw in all of my writing. The heroine is always tough and strict and strong - to a fault. Just as it's hard for me to be emotional in my interactions, it's hard for these women to be emotional as well, and I think it negatively affects the overall story.
But writing is a process, and with each new story (be it novel length or flash fiction), I work on character and plot and action and description and all that other jazz that goes into a story and each time my writing gets stronger, my stories get better and my characters become slightly more believable and relatable. Maybe by my 12th novel I'll be doing it well enough.
Then again, maybe this novel is done well enough and will be published. Just the possibility of that starts making me worry. Do I really want this to be my first published novel? Do I want to be listed as a horror author? No matter if it's this novel or another, once I do get published I'll always be worrying about if my book was written well enough, how people will judge me based on my writing/genre choice/character actions/awkward love scenes etc.
At least I'm not worried about the prospect of having no readers, only judgy readers ;p