Monday, February 14, 2011

Love: WIP style

As I wind down on revisions to HOW TO DATE AN ALIEN, I’ve had my eye on a new WIP…something different…something sexy…something I like to call “Sekrit dystopian project.”

Are you intrigued?  You should be!  Isn’t that what a new romance is all about?

Since there is some sort of holiday today I thought I would talk to you a little bit about L-O-V-E and how love with a person can be so similar to the love we have for our writing.

Step 1)  The Crush:  You have a shiny new idea for a WIP.  You can’t seem to get it out of your head.  But you can’t figure out how to approach it.  You think about it a million different ways and then scratch each new beginning until you finally get the nerve to start.

Step 2)  The First date:  For some this is amazing.  You click automatically and your friends have to drag you out of your bed and away from your laptop so that you’ll stop writing.  Then there are those “first dates” that you just can’t seem to get going.  You may stare at a blank screen forever, start looking at other website to get “inspiration,” or ultimately give up on the project.

Step 3.)  Courtship:  Now you are in full-blown dating mode.  You have your ups- those days where you can write and write all day.  Then you have your downs- those days where you can’t write a single thing and don’t even want to think about it.  But you are really starting to get serious with this project and you either start thinking about taking it to the next level or breaking off.

Step 4.)  Meet the parents:  If you haven’t given up on the project you know this is the time that it’s ready to start getting looked at by your critique partners.  Some of them may hate the story and others may love it.  This is the big test to see if you still love your manuscript, or it has become too much work and there is no way that you can make it change.

Step 5.)  Engagement:  Congrats you are taking your project to the next level!  It’s time you get ready for the big day and start shopping the project around to agents.  This will also give you a lot of ups and downs, just like planning a wedding.  You may get some rejections- some promising ones in which you think you may get a shot at that dream wedding, only to get crushed in the end.  But once you do find that agent for your work, you know that it’s going to be a very special day for you and your manuscript.

Step 6.)  Marriage:  Now it’s time for that agent to give you some revision suggestions and to shop around that manuscript to publishers.  At first you’re in the honeymoon stage and every little step is wonderful.  You love the revision suggestions, you love your agent and everything is hunky dory.  Of course that can only last so long… you may have rejections from publishers coming in or you may start to get burnt out on rejections.  At this point you either try and work things out and keep moving forward or you may need manuscript counseling.

Step 7.)  And baby makes three:  YEAH you sold your book!  Now you get to spend the next year or so marketing, getting your name out there, and preparing for that book baby.  It’s a lot more work than you originally thought and you find yourself crying for no reason and eating lots of chocolate, but once you see your book baby on the shelf there is nothing like it.

What step are you in your book relationship?  Would you change anything to these steps?  Are you spending your Valentine’s day with a sweetheart or your manuscript?


  1. I guess I'm between the newly wed. stage and first child. LOL. Great analogy, Magan! This is sweet!

  2. Ha. I'm in the marriage stage but it's never been in that honeymoon stage! It's more stress than anything. Once I finish the edits, I'm hoping for our lovechild.

  3. YOur analogy is brilliant. I'm in the meet the parents stage, and I've got spinach in my teeth.


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