Thursday, 29 April 2010

So How Do You Go About Writing a Novel?

When I was about fifteen I went on a particularly long holiday with my family, and decided that this was an opportune moment to get stuck in and begin writing a book. Having indulged in Sci-fi fantasy most of my life, from what I remember my story was of a generic nature with a protagonist from a shattered background looking for his place in life during a war. I wrote about fifty pages and then got decidely bored of all my characters and gave up. I've since started two others (neither getting past twenty pages of the first chapter), and have run into the same problem.

The deciding factor I always become hung up on is the story. I like to be original, but I keep finding myself lending elements from what I've seen and read, and the thought constantly playing in the back of my head is that the story will end up just being that second story that borrowed so heavily from another author. So my question is, how do you go about writing something completely original? Wells invisioned massive tripods higher than the tallest buildings of the time, piloted by the inhabitants of our closest neighbour planet, which he described in the most incredible detail; even the dimensions, the workings of their weapons was described on a believable and scientific level. Crichton explored the ethics of genetic engineering while taking us on a edge-of-your-seat ride through Jurassic Park. I remember an author, Michael Marshall Smith, and his novel "One of Us" amusing me with his protagonist's sentient wristwatch.
It's actually gotten to the point to which I thought I might be bugged as ideas I had ended up appearing elsewhere (see: Maria Carey Skeleton Car).

Perhaps I need to lock myself in a room for a day and write down the most obsurd things I can think of. Perhaps I need to take a notepad and pen to coffee time and jot down some of the insane ideas that are conjoured by my fellow Physicists. Maybe my inspiration is already in my mind, and it just needs to be found...

On that note, a friend of mine (who will actually be joining my group as of October this year) has written and published a Sci-Fi fantasy story. If it sounds like your cup of tea, please do buy a copy: it's certainly inspired me to have another crack. Fourth time lucky perhaps?

Osirus Ransandyne - The Final Paradise.