Though CampNaNo is over, I don’t feel the usual release I have after the actual NaNo. Normally, by Dec. 1, I’m free of what I’ve been writing, and can move on to other things.
But this time I’m still obsessed.
Admittedly, in part that’s because I’m looking the piece over to fix the worst problems so I can send it to one of the people from my cabin as a beta reader prior to possibly posting it on a fanfic site, but that doesn’t really cover the crux of the problem: these characters haven’t let go of my brain yet.
Which wouldn’t be a problem if they were my characters.
I’d try inventing original characters similar to them for an original work, but the last time I tried that (NaNo 2012) it didn’t work in any regard: by the time Dec. 1 rolled around, the characters were utterly unlike the ones they started out as, I was horribly disappointed by the book (to the extent that I’ve never once re-opened the file to have another look at it), and the new characters never took up residence in my head for a minute, not even while I was writing it.
Anyway, while I’m still afraid I’ve re-opened the fanfic floodgates (there are so many other things I want to write about these characters!), I’m trying to focus right now on what the heck I want to do in fixing this story up. (“Story,” she says. About a 155k behemoth.)
The biggest problem — other than the inconsistent pacing, lack of description, spotty characterization and dangling plot threads that are typical of me — is this one particular sequence relatively early on.
Okay, so my piece gets its two romantic leads from the movie, the reporter and the rock star. (Which would be a great title for it if it was just about their romance.) At the start of the fic, the reporter is already essentially in love with the rock star, though he’s not quite prepared to use those words to describe it. And he doesn’t figure he’s ever going to see the rock star again, so he’s mostly just trying not to think about him. Only then he goes to his favorite bar for a drink on Saturday night, and the rock star just happens to be there. (Which reminds me, I need to explain what the heck he was doing there…) Well, this obviously does nothing to reduce his romantic feelings for the other man, but he’s still trying to fight it. Only then, the next Saturday, he goes back to the same bar (well, it’s more of a club than a bar, actually) and runs into the rock star again. (That one I did explain.)
Now, here is where the difficulty comes in. Because by the time I was writing that scene, I already had in mind several other scenes about their relationship: two in between scenes of the reporter pining for the rock star, the scene where the rock star shows up at the reporter’s apartment completely wasted and they end up having rather unsatisfying sex, and then the first time we get the rock star’s POV which ends with them having much nicer sex. (Yeah, I know, there are a lot of problems with that.)
And the difficulty in that? Because the rock star had only gone back to that bar in the first place because he was hoping to run into the reporter again, in order to score with him, trying to keep them from hitting the sack together at the end of the second bar scene was so difficult that the only way I found to do it was to have four horny fangirls show up and chase the reporter away. Which isn’t very convincing (said girls being in the 18-22 range, and said rock star being 37), is awfully (in)convenient timing, and isn’t much fun to read. Plus it really ticked off the rock star (in that he felt the reporter had abandoned him to his vulture-like fans), so that when he next shows up, he’s incredibly angry (he does that) and calling the reporter some very not-nice names, to the point that it was actually physically difficult for me to write it. (He uses a particular profanity a lot in the movie, one which I really don’t like and never use myself (a very rare thing), and though I have no trouble typing it normally, because it was aimed at the reporter, it took me like half an hour to get that part of the scene written, because my fingers so didn’t want to type that.)
The real problem is that I don’t like the idea of just re-writing the scene so that the girls don’t show up and the leads hook up a bit over a week early. Because the two scenes of the reporter pining for the rock star are really…it would be going too far to say that they’re good, per se, but let’s suffice it to say that I really like them, particularly the one where he goes to a gay bar in the hopes of having a one-night stand to make him forget the rock star, only to get jealous when the sound system starts playing a love duet sung by the rock star and one of his exes. And that’s the one that can’t still be used. The other one — in which he goes to hear the rock star performing live at a local night club — could be adapted and kept, but the gay bar scene absolutely would make no sense if they’d already hooked up, and putting it before their second in-fic meeting is too soon: they only met twice in the movie (yet I am absolutely not inventing the reporter’s feelings for the rock star) so for him to be that obsessed that quickly would be a bit much. In fact, it’s really kind of pushing it to have it after their second in-fic meeting.
Well, that’s something I’m hoping the beta reader can help me with.
I also have something like 8 or 9 temp names that need replacing with real names. Characters have temp names like Ughanother Nameneededhere and Ihate Namingcharacters. Things I can swap out easily with “find – replace”…if I can come up with names for them. (For a fanfic, it has a ludicrous number of OCs. Probably because the nature of the story requires a ton of characters for them to interact with, which the movie does not provide, particularly in the 1984 section.)
I think I had more I wanted to say, but my back is now screaming at me that it’s time to lie down, so I’m just going to cut off this rambling mess of a post here.
Tomorrow will hopefully be back to my regularly scheduled programming.
Assuming my back will let me write.