Writing is hard. Sure, we have lots of ideas, can plot out a story like nobody's business and have voice pretty much covered, BUT we're falling a wee bit short in some...uh other rather important areas. Mainly character development and pacing.
But who needs character development? Who cares about the pace of a story?
Turns out readers do. Who knew?
When we actually sat down to analyze our shortcomings, we realized something. Because we write together, there's a whole lot of dialogue back and forth about all aspects of a WIP. We know the characters inside and out, understand their backstory, know what makes them tick. The problem is translating this onto the page--showing the reader (ah, showing versus telling, how you haunt us), investing the reader, getting the reader to understand. A few quirks is not enough. Readers want emotional investment. They want to pull for characters, root them on, CARE. By the millionth draft of The Liar Society, we like to think we were able to tap into that, but we want to learn how to do that in the first or second draft! We want to learn how to write more efficiently.
In terms of pacing, we've gotten greedy since reading primarily YA. We love being thrown into a story, like the feeling of whiplash, of action, the go-go-go. But, as always, there's a fine line. A plot can definitely move too quickly, leaving a reader feeling annoyed and uninterested. We want to learn the art of unfolding a story, luring our readers along. And we want to learn it NOW.
So...we're in research mode. We're reading and learning and talking and practicing. Because we want to get it right. We're determined to get it right. We have to get it right.
For the love of God, please tell us we're not the only ones. Leave your writing-related Achilles' heels in the comments.
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