Thursday, January 26, 2012
My Magnificent Octopus
And I'm not even talking about Cthulhu (for once). No, over the last couple of weeks I decided to finish the third novel I'd been planning to finish during NaNoWriMo last year. At the time, it just didn't work; for whatever reason my brain couldn't cope with the way the story was going and I couldn't make sense of anything. So, I quit, and continued on with other stories. But I was reading the latest Stephen King a couple weeks back and the time-travel element finally kickstarted my own brain, and here we are.
I now have a couple first draft of The Juniper Bones. And no real idea what to do with it. If there's anything in this world that tells me I will never be a publishable author, it's that I have five first drafts of five different novels lying around my harddrive and I have no idea how to pitch any of them. For What We Drown is probably the easiest, being an urban fantasy romance, but it's overlong and the second part needs to be completely rewritten. Hibernaculum reads like a Russian novel (HELLO TOLSTOY) but it's supposed to be fantasy. But then it's romance. But then there's too much romance for the fantasists and too much fantasy for the romantics AND IT READS LIKE A FUCKING RUSSIAN EPIC. Winter is coming, in-fucking-deed. The Neverboy is YA, but it's about fifty thousand words too long to be published in that genre and being that it already forms the first part of a trilogy can't be hacked in half. Greywater is again a romantic fantasy, and suffers from many of the same issues as Hibernaculum, without being dogged by the shadow of the Russians.
The Juniper Bones is a completely different wee beastie. ...or huge beastie, let's get it right. It exists in three parts and weighs in at around 320k before editing. I also refer to it as My Magnificent Octopus, because magnum opus is far too grand a title for this particular pile of rubbish. But it's my rubbish. Because the main character, Eliot, is someone who cannot see his place in the world and therefore sees no point in living in said world any longer, but lacks the motivation to even try to leave it. He's waiting for someone to make the decision for him, because he knows in his heart he doesn't know how to make that decision for himself. And he's afraid of making the wrong decision. Again. Because he's always making he wrong decision.
Eliot is an expy of my own worst fears.
Because of that TJB is deeply personal. It's also completely insane. There's no way any publisher would touch it. So it's just...sitting there, now. Rather like the little doll of Morgan in the picture above, who stares at me with Baleful Button Eyes and reminds me that I'm just a fool for thinking any of this could ever work. So...yeah. My first entry of the year has straggled in rather late, and it's rather gloomy. I can't help but think I ought to give up on writing. But then writing's about the only thing that gives me any purpose in this world anymore.
I suppose in the meantime to cheer myself up I'll pretend that my Morgan doll has a switch like this. Because honestly, if she doesn't? I'm in real trouble now.