Monday, July 20, 2009

Nearing the Milestone of Destinah.

Under My Skin is inching closer to the point that I affectionately refer to as the Milestone of Destinah: 15,000 words. As mentioned in previous blog entries, this is the point when I can usually tell if a book is going to sink or swim. Very rarely, a book will reach 20,000 before getting trunked (writerese for "shit-canned"). Once past 25,000, it's getting finished if I have to write it in blood.

As of this blog entry, Under My Skin is just over 14,000. I'll be honest: I've been having a hell of a time with this book. Of course, starting it just had to coincide with taking a week off, trying to get back in my groove after taking said week off, and just generally feeling "blah" about writing. It also has some issues that have been causing me difficulty. I couldn't tell if it was a legitimate problem with the story, just my own wangsting, or what, but I was definitely concerned that the book had a oneway ticket to the Wangstbasket.

Last night, while chatting with Adam and Scarlett in between trying to slog through a particularly difficult chapter, I figured out one of the major issues that was slowing me down.

The relationship between my two main characters has the potential for a lot of "power imbalances", and could also sneak into Creepyville if not handled right. Not that their relationship is, by nature, creepy (it's definitely not), but there's a significant age gap between them, as well as some other complicating factors. I don't find May-December relationships creepy, but having been the "May" a couple times, I know how easy it is for people to interpret it as such. When you're on the outside looking in (say, as a reader), there's a very fine line between romantic and sleazy. It's my job as the writer to at least try to keep it out of Sleazetopia.

So my big problem was getting too hung up on not making one of them too dominant, keeping a believable balance between them, and staying out of Creepyville. As with anything, if too much time is spent wangsting about it, not enough time is spent writing it.


So with that issue resolved and my attention focused on writing the damned story, it's getting easier, but I'm still having a hard time with this book. It remains to be seen if that means the book isn't going to work, or if it's simply not as easy to write as others have been. Some paintings are harder to paint than others...doesn't mean either is good or bad, just more difficult.

The Milestone of Destinah is fast approaching. By this time tomorrow, the fate of Under My Skin will be determined:

Keep writing it, or kick it to the Wangstbasket.

Stay tuned.


  1. This book will be great. I have spoken.

    Yes, there are quite a few ways it could go wonky, but there are just as many, if not more, ways to make it great. YOU WILL NAIL IT.

    *Menny hugs*


  2. You keep mentioning creepsville...and I think about vampire fangs. We're not going there, right?

  3. Noooooooo not that kind of Creepyville. I mean the squicky, dirty old man kind of creepy.

  4. If you even THINK about throwing this book in the wangstbasket I shall bean you.

  5. Did somebody say SIGNIFICANT AGE GAP?

    You know I love those words. Tell me the hero knows some magic tricks. I'll love you forever.

  6. I mean, really. A book with a dirty old man in it. I think you just need to let me read what you've got so far and tell you what I think of it.

    You're really considering getting squicked by this? C'mon. 32 years, Lori. 32 years.

  7. I didn't say *I* was getting squicked by it. LOL I was concerned about writing it in such a way that the *reader* would. ( if I would be bothered by an age gap, given my history LOL)

    They're 26 years apart. So there.

  8. Libbie, you may be interested in my next project then...