Wednesday, July 1, 2009

My WIP and Me (or Second Time's the Charm?)

Tip of the Day: Marshmallow squares made with Rice Chex are not only gluten-free, but are even more addicting than marshmallow squares made with Rice Krispies. Yes, it is possible.

My current WIP is my first ever WIP.

Allow me to clarify: 7 novels later*, I'm rewriting my first ever YA novel. And I'm excited about it!

After not reading this novel (in its 4th title iteration of KEEPING SISTER SECRETS) for over 3 years, I had a brainstorm: a new, edgier, angstier voice for the MC. I couldn't ignore the nagging feeling that rewriting this novel was worth a shot. After all, it was the first story that ever came to me in such hardcore certainty that I had to write a 200-page novel about it. I mean, it had some pretty OK rejections years ago when I was barely the writer I am now, so why not take it up a notch, make it the book I wanted it to be before I had the skills to make it so?

Do I see the wisdom in shelving manuscripts? Hell yeah! But do I also see the wisdom in ressurecting them a couple years later and giving them a whole new spin? Hell hell yeah! Or at least, that's what I'm saying now in my state of first draft euphoria. Wanna read a snippet?

I knew you did!

Lockers slam up and down the hall. Emo music pipes through the loudspeakers from our high school radio station. The shouting voices of my classmates echo off the concrete walls. I stand alone at the pop machine in the foyer, wondering where the hell my little sister is. She knows I hate waiting, especially alone.

“Hey, Mel!” My best friend Kasey skitters up to my side, relieving me of my solo panic.

“Where is she?” I ask Kasey, as if she’d know.

Kasey shoves a piece of gum into her mouth. Around us our fellow students
book for the exit at the end of the school day.

“Maybe she’s with that dude she went to the ball with,” Kasey says, chomping on her gum. “That roided out guy?”

“Then why did she ask me to walk home with her?” I ask, kicking the pop machine. Annie’s always late and waiting pisses me off. She knows it, too.

Unless something’s really wrong?

And if all goes well with this rewrite, I may go back to my second ever ms and rewrite that one....

Has anyone else successfully rewritten an "old school" ms?

Deena, Miss Subbing for Pubbing

*Yes, I've written 7 novels and none are published -- yet!** Use me as an example of someone who keeps writing to write and will never give up.

**Stay tuned for a future post on Where They Are Now!


Lisa Schroeder said...

Well, my friend Lisa Madigan rewrote her mermaid story from MG to YA and it was accepted as her second book in her contract. She said it was hard work doing a total rewrite, but obviously it paid off! :)

Lisa Schroeder said...

Oh, forgot to say, yay you for continuing to write and playing around with manuscripts to figure out what they need! So awesome!!

Kate Fall said...

I love the way you put that: now you have the skills to tell the story you always wanted to tell! And I think you're very brave for sharing a sneak peek at it.

DeenaML said...

Lisa -- yay mermaid book and rewrites!

Kate -- thanks!

Emily Marshall said...

Deena, good for you for going back and giving it a shot!!! That's fun to hear it worked out for someone else, and I hope you have a happy ending as well :)