new orleans author
My writing stresses me out. It’s not that I think I’m a bad writer. I know I’m not at the ability of my daydream self. Daydream Ari is able to write a masterpiece in an afternoon with words so powerful they can launch a rocket to Mars, dig up water, sprout life into a vacuum, and cure cancer.
It’s just that, I finish a rough draft under the guise of, it’s okay if it’s shit because that’s what editing is for, but then the editing starts and I’m just staring at this 300 page document thinking “what have I done?”
There’s always good writing in it. That’s not because I’m a good writer it’s just simple statistics. Anyone who can read and write is capable of saying something smart if they have 70,000 words to play with. The problem is, I’m often left asking two questions (depending on the book I’m working on):
1) Where the hell is the plot?
2) why do these characters suck?
Okay, there’s a chance there’s a third question that’s some combination of the previous 2 but I just bury those manuscripts deep in my desktop folders for future Ari to deal with–future Ari has gotta be way smarter than me after all.
The problem I’m dealing with now comes from two manuscripts. Both are about 250 pages, both lack that emotional punch. It’s impressive how unemotional they are actually I mean one deals with assisted suicide and euthanasia in a fantasy setting (it’s disguised as a medical option but it’s really a non-mortal experience on another plane of existence) and the other deals with a painter who is forced to return home and is haunted by his dead fiance.
Both lack backstory, which I can’t weave in without flashbacks, and I’m nervous the flashbacks I put in during edits are too abrupt–like la di da here’s your story then BAM! Flashback boulder drops from the sky and you have to walk all the way around it to get back to the plot.
I mean–I guess what sucks is these are clearly supposed to be emotional stories with deep themes–I guess–and they more often than not leave me asking “so what?” while I’m reading them. I can’t publish them because I don’t feel like punishing people for buying my book lol.
I’m just in a bit of a rut I guess. Part of me wants to work on new projects but I know that’s crazy since I have these old projects to work on. I also know if I can’t edit these old projects what’s the point in working on something new because it’s just going to end up in my edit folders one day and will never be touched again.
So I’m working on these two projects–I’m hoping I find results.
I have another novella coming out October 17
I have two episodes of a serial I’m co-writing with Lauren Lee coming out September 4th with a new episode released monthly.
It would be a nice win if I could put out my first full length novel soon.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
So, yeah, I know it’s not always kosher to rate your own book but so far the Goodreads community hasn’t minded. For those unfamiliar with my ratings, I like to give a kind of letter from the author in the review section so people can gain a bit of personal insight into what my work means to me.
Beds Are For Flowers was originally going to be a middle-grade book. The main character was going to be nine and his father was going to turn into a tree in the end. I had this beautiful idea in my mind that becoming one with nature was the highest level of enlightenment a person could achieve and Clarence would be able to climb his father’s tree every day and feel connected to him.
I didn’t go in this direction. Since the book deals with reapers, monsters, and death I thought it might be better to make Clarence thirteen. I put a lot of thought into what makes life so beautiful, and I know even a book couldn’t come close to an answer, but when I think of beauty I obviously jump at low hanging fruit like color and sound. So, when the world lost its life in this story, color and sound were among the first casualties. I imagined a gray, twisted, shell of the world we all know, sort of inspired by Joni Mitchell’s Big Yellow Taxi “you paved paradise, put up a parking lot.”
Balance is one of the main themes in this book. Paradise and the mortal realm are two sides of the same coin and when one gets sick the other suffers. This is going to make me sound like such a hippy but I guess I wrote this as an ode to the innocence of nature. It doesn’t try to be beautiful, it just is, and we turn our backs on it too often for our own convenience, preferring a road to a forest.
I hope this insight makes some sense. I’m worried it sounds like a ramble.
Anyway, I hope you like the book and I’m always interested in more ARC readers.
Thanks for your interest.