Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Planning HORIZON DROP: Sailing Over the Edge?

They say write what you know.

Others say that's boring and we should write what we don't know.

For my next WIP, HORIZON DROP, I am most definitely doing that. In fact, I have absolutely no knowledge whatsoever on my topic.

What is it? Seafaring.

And not just seafaring. I'm talking pirate-times 400-years-or-so-ago seafaring.*

I've been reading books and pinning references and browsing nautical dictionaries, but there is so much to learn! Even with research, I know I'll be pausing dozens, if not hundreds, of times during the drafting process to look up a word or see how something-or-other works.

Not to mention I'm trying my hand at epic fantasy again. Epic fantasy is hard. My first five novels were epic fantasy, and they got me no where. (Did I mention I didn't start writing good books until I stopped writing epic? I feel like I should have one of those Insecure Writer group logos on here.)

But I want to give it a try. And I love the ideas I have plastered all over my makeshift storyboard. I'm hoping it will be worth all the hours I'll have to pour into research so I don't sound like an idiot.**

So here goes. I'm planning on starting the novel by October 15th and finishing the first draft before Christmas (not having a day job does wonders for the word count). After that I have to gear up and get as much of The Materials Magician done before I pop out a baby.

What are you working on? Ever set yourself up to conquer something completely massive?

*At least it's not historical, so I get a tiny bit of slack there.

**Did I mention I've only been to the ocean once? No? Oh. Well...


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  2. I love high fantasy. My first story--a upper middle grade story--is high fantasy. You are SO productive. Can't believe all you have planned before your baby comes.

  3. Hey, if it's calling to you, you should write it. I Hope you have fun and that it turns out great!

  4. I highly recommend reading the Horatio Hornblower series to get a feel for ship's anatomy and sailing jargon. Well, if you're doing something 19th century-ish. Or you could save some time and just watch the movies, which are awesome. :)

  5. Sounds so fabulous. I love pirate stuff. That's all I read when I was little. I used to dream about Blackbeard. And I love perusing your pinterest inspiration.

  6. "My first five novels were epic fantasy, and they got me no where. (Did I mention I didn't start writing good books until I stopped writing epic?)"
    Hey remember that one time like two years ago where somebody in your writing group kept telling you that you might enjoy writing YA instead of Epic Fantasy, and you said something along the lines of "I'd rather die then be a YA author?"
    Just tossing that thought out there. ;P Good luck with your pirate novel!

  7. The good thing about fantasy is that you can make stuff up! I totally agree with doing your research and learning all the rules, so you can then know where you can break them! Chuck Wendig recently blogged about "write what you know" and I agree with his take: it doesn't mean you can't write about pirates since you're not one, it just means to instill in our work truths about life that we have learned, and that can fit into any genre. God, how boring would books be if authors only wrote exactly things they'd experienced or seen for themselves? Fantasy would be non-existent.

    Love your Pinterest board! God, I love Pinterest :)

  8. I remember that trip to California. I think I still have that video of your first encounter with the beach somewhere.

  9. As someone said above, the good thing about fantasy is that you can make stuff up... but the bad part is that it all has to make sense and the world you've made up has to work. >_< Best of luck in making it all work.

  10. Oh!! Good luck with the epic fantasy. How cool! I love seafaring type stories, but know next to nothing about the subject too. Great topic though.