Trying New Things

Although I love planning and starting new novels, it makes me a little crazy too. I mean, in addition to all the normal worries (e.g. am I wasting my time? will I ever get published? if the previous novel(s) didn't get me an agent, what makes me think this one will? etc.), I have worries about new things.

I have to try new things. Unless it's a sequel, I need new characters, a new world, and a whole new idea, otherwise, what's the point? But new things are scary.

For example, The Cunning will be the first time I've tried writing a female protagonist.* Not only that, but she's a teenager. I don't know if I can do that convincingly. What if I'm trying something I'm just not good enough to write yet?

And Suriya doesn't even speak English. Am I going to have a lot of dialogue tags with "she said in Thai"? Will Suriya and Anna** have telepathic dialogue the entire time? What about the times Anna tries to speak to Suriya in English and she doesn't understand?

It also looks as though the entire first book (I think in trilogies) takes place in Thailand. I wanted to give this story something unique from my experience, but I'm afraid I'm going overboard with it -- including every little thing I know about this place. Even crazier, what if it does work, everybody loves it, but they're all disappointed because Book 2 takes place in the US?***

What if I can't find Suriya's voice? What if I do and it's no good? What if I can't bring the humor from Air Pirates into this story? What if I force the humor in and it doesn't fit?

I'm being totally stupid, I know (and thank you for caring enough to read this far, btw). Ultimately this is just a fear of failure I need to get over. The truth is if I don't try new things, I'll never know the answers to any of those what-ifs and I'll never get to tell Suriya's story.

I keep thinking that if this doesn't work it will be a year (or more) wasted writing this story, but the only way it would be wasted is if I didn't learn anything. What I really need to do is stop writing to get published and start writing for me again.

Hey, how about that? The crazy's gone.

* No, wait. The original "Joey Stone" had one, but she wasn't a teenager. Also, that story wasn't very good.

** For those of you
following along, Charity's name is now Anna.

*** Think that's crazy? I'm also thinking, "What if I can't write Book 2 because I haven't lived in the US for 4 years?"


Natalie Whipple said...

Adam, I say this with all the love in the world: "Shut up and write the dang book."

That is all.

Adam Heine said...

LOL, Natalie. Rest assured, I am working on it. These are just all the things that swirl in my head while I try to figure out why Suriya needs rescuing. Putting them up here in public helps me realize how stupid they are :-)

Natalie Whipple said...

Yes, yes, now that you're done fretting, get to it:) It sounds like a fun idea. And if I can write a teenage boy, you can certainly manage a teen girl. Just sayin'.

L. T. Host said...

Thanks for linking to this! It's always good to know I'm not alone. And the awesome part is that I had SO MANY of the same questions when I started thinking about writing my second novel, V. Except, you know, with my characters' names and gender-appropriate pronouns.

Write on! Here's hoping you're making progress on this one, it sounds interesting!