Thursday, December 07, 2006

In Over My Head?

You know that old saying, 'Don't bite off more than you can chew'? Recently, in my wip, I've felt that way. The story started out as a simple tale of betrayal and redemption. Now it's morphed into this complex story of international intrigue and deception. Bullets are flying and people are performing heroic feats. Right now, my characters are sitting in a restaurant in Paris, waiting for me to tell them something to say. And here I am at my desk in Alabama, trying to pretend I don't see their confused and worried looks while I mutter to myself, "There's no way can I write this."

I believe it's a good story, very high concept and hopefully, someday, a doggone good read. However, I'm afraid it's more than I can handle.

So what's the solution? Give up and admit defeat? I'm not big on giving up, so I'll plug along. But I was wondering if anyone else has ever had this feeling. If so, what did you do about it? Did you overcome your doubts and fears and do it anyway? If so, how? Were you pleased with the outcome?


JoAnn said...

Are you writing for a specific line or publisher? If the publisher has specific guidelines, that may help you stay focussed. When I was working on a story that I was targeting to a category line, all kinds of subplots and what not kept trying to elbow their way in. But I squashed them because I knew they would make the book unacceptable for that particular line. Well, as it turns out, even without them, the book was unacceptable to that particular line. :-) Now, I'm going back to rework it for some other publisher, and maybe I'll let all those things back in. I guess my answer is maybe you're not really in over your head!

Karen Beeching said...

I do this all the time. My big problem is that I write for a particular category line and by the time I'm finished with the book they just changed the guidelines for that line. Go figure. Also, I like putting a lot of police procedures in my books and tend to get so specific I start having nightmares about the details. I e-mail poor Danny Agan so much these days I should probably give the man a gift certificate at the Outback. And honestly, all of the books on police procedures and forensics can't possibly cover every little thing. So I start doubting myself around chapter 2 and I'm ready to pitch the book into the trash by chapter 15.

My husband's advice? "Just remember you enjoy this." It always brings me back to why I started writing to begin with. From talking to so many other authors, I think we all can get so caught up in guidelines and facts that we lose sight of the original idea--to have fun.

Just enjoy!! (Although you may need to do some serious research with that one.) :)

Christy said...

I write single title, so I'm not bound by any particular guidelines. I think it's just my own fears that hold me back.

And Karen, you're right. I need to remember to just enjoy this. I actually love this story but when I start thinking about it too much, I freak out.