Kalliel (kalliel) wrote,

Writing Wrap-Up Meme

Because I can't think of a better way to wrap up the year than with a writing wrap-up meme. Y'all should do it, too! And for those of you who meta, or graphic, or art, etc., I'm sure it can easily be modified to suit your needs. I answered in the context of Supernatural fic (not that this should be surprising, or that there is any other way I would have answered it, but you know. For posterity I thought I should mention this). Also, I love how random this meme is. THE EIGHTH WORD OF THE 163RD PARAGRAPH OF YOUR FIFTH FIC IS... And the concrit question was super cool, too.

The questions:

First posted, and its first sentence:
Last posted, and its last sentence:
Least Favorite:
Most Difficult:
15th paragraph of the 5th story you posted:
Looking back, do you notice any trends in your writing? Stylistic choices, characterizations, genres?
Did you finish everything you started this year?
Most Recently Written Paragraph:
Criticize something about your eighth posted work this year. Make that something to focus on for 2012.
Pick something you loved from both your first and last posted works. Draw hearts.
Did you have any writing goals this year? What were they, and did you meet them?
Do you have any for 2012?
What do you want to write?

First posted, and its first sentence: What the Thunder Said (14 January). Your visions must have dropped the ball, because this has already happened; you are past this. Dean is fine.

Last posted, and its last sentence: That Were (30 December). Then Dean's phone rings.

And a crucial sentence it is! Even though it doesn't look it. I wrote this sentence in November, and it changed, well, everything.

Shortest: A Piece of Night (29 June), ~700 words

Longest: Place at the End (15 June) -- ~28000 words

Favorite: Brass Ceiling (12 September). It's about Gwen, and it's about miscellaneous hunters and the hunting life, and it's done in first person outsider POV, and it's supposed to emulate a style of longform journalism, and these are all things I like very much. XD One of my favorite things about non fiction is that there are natural non sequiturs and illogical progressions and strange little quirks that reveal themselves in ways that aren't 'allowed' in traditional fiction or cohesive storytelling. Fabricating these weird kernels in a fiction story was strange at first, because in NF they're just kind of....THERE... XP But I adored the process anyway. That and creating super random, estranged relatives for the Winchesters is one of my most pleasurable pastimes.

Least Favorite: Place at the End (15 June), because I in no way gave this story the care and time it deserved. Which I realize is fairly endemic to Big Bangs, and almost the point (like NaNo), but I feel like I failed this particularly badly here. Truth be told I don't remember what actually got written and what didn't, nor have I read the final product outside of applying my beta-team's fabulous corrections. I just remember being hungry and tired and probably writing the Winchesters being hungry and tired. And as much as I undoubtedly adore hungry, tired Winchesters, it wasn't that much fun!

I really valued the responses that story got, though--both on the fic post and on my thread on the anonymeme. All the criticisms are true and the positive commentary made me really happy. Their combination makes me want to look at this story again and work it the way I originally wanted to, fix everything, but that would require reading it and I'm pretty sure I can't do that. This fic was traumatizing in ways that don't make sense and I probably couldn't articulate even if they did. XP

Easiest: I'm going to soapbox here and note that nothing you do, that you really love, should ever be easy. But I have to admit: Proxy (9 September) was Very Easy. It took 20k to get to the 850 words that fic is, but those 850 were utterly painless, and very fast.

Most Difficult: That Were (31 December), because it took me a long time to figure out what I wanted it to be; there were a lot of words in the way.

15th paragraph of the 5th story you posted: It would be this one. From Commedia (22 March):
Dean doesn't try to speak, doesn't even look at her, like he's finally figured out that cocky grins and stern jaws don't mean a damn thing to her, or anyone (anyone left); he must notice the bruises on her wrist, or the swelling--either is a feat, given the state of all the human landmines strewn about them--because that's the first thing he grabs for. Fractured scaphoid, pulverized lunate--twister triquetral and pisiform just gone. What's left grinds together, making witch's powder out of Meg.

Looking back, do you notice any trends in your writing? Stylistic choices, characterizations, genres? All of the dialogue does not appear to be characters having dialogues so much as they are stating fragments in the general vicinity of other characters. And I don't mean this in a derogatory way, though it would be nice to have some conversations in a fic once in a while.

Did you finish everything you started this year? LOL.

If you didn't, give us a summary of something you haven't finished:
"I just want you to be okay."

"Well, that ship has sailed, Sam. So you better hop on a party boat 'cause otherwise you're getting left behind."

Most Recently Written Paragraph: From That Were (30 December)

You don't make deals with the infallible; you make deals with the winning team. And if the tracks are gonna end, death's probably the best place to do it. It's a little messy, but it'll work; death can end it. Death can be a choice. That choice is just an on the QT deal with fate. That's all.

Dean can live with that. Or, you know, whatever.

This is the middle of a scene in the middle of the fic, but it entirely replaced a different scene that had been sitting around in the draft since the very beginning.

Criticize something about your eighth posted work this year. Make that something to focus on for 2012. Fic #8 is Doorways (10 July), where the Winchesters end up in the panic room because Dean broke some ribs on a random hunt, and in so doing broke the anti-angel sigil Castiel carved into them. Unable to access them physically, Michael goes the mindfuck route. Sam watches.

I borrowed the premise from an earlier unfinished fic I'd started, wherein Jo accompanies Sam and Dean on a hunt in the Colorado mountains in order to put some space between Ellen and herself after 5x02 "Good God, Y'all". In that version, the idea was to dissect Sam and Dean's crappy S5 relationship by setting it beside Jo's assumptions of them, based on their less crappy S2 relationship (aka when she saw them last).

Actual!Doorways didn't have that opportunity because it was just Sam and Dean alone, and I don't think I ever compensated for Jo's absence, or made the resultant narrative changes that should have been required. Instead, Sam has an ill-conceived epiphany, says some cop-out lines about 'being there for Dean' and 'they'll be okay because they have to be, the end', and they carry on without explanation. I don't think the 'so how did they best Michael?' needed to be explained so much as Sam's thought process and the Winchesters' relationship needed to be worked out more. The emotional resolution was facile and unbelievable because I pulled out instead of cutting deeper.

I guess that makes my resolution for 2012 to, uh, not do that, especially when I realize that that's what I'm doing. A related criticism/resolution would be to be more open to shifting ~ultimate purposes~ of stories when it becomes apparent that something isn't working, or something is going in a completely different direction than intended. I think it's valuable to try to reign in and get back on track (in an attempt to fulfill a prompt, or an attempt to fulfill a pre-conceived idea of what the hell you were writing), but other times it's better just to run with it, and not be afraid to overwrite, omit, re-imagine.

Pick something you loved from both your first and last posted works. Draw hearts. YOU THOUGHT YOU WERE KIDDING ABOUT DRAWING THE HEARTS, DIDN'T YOU, MEME.

I know it sounds ridiculous, but I love that bit. I know even less about guns than I do about cars, which is even less than I know about anything supernatural, but I remember having great fun looking up what sort of gun you'd use to shoot a normal wolf, were you planning to shoot one. I don't even care if this information is accurate or not. XP IT'S ALL ABOUT VERISIMILITUDE, OKAY. And I remember looking up how many shots you could get off in a given time period, and the velocity at which the bullets would fly. Obviously none of this had actual bearing on the fic, but I had fun exploring!

Also, I learned that it's illegal to shoot a .22 at a wolf in Alaska, or something like that. This is relevant knowledge.

As for the last one, considering I literally just finished it, I think it's too soon to go around picking favorites. I am intensely pleased it's done, though. Like, intensely.

Did you have any writing goals this year? What were they, and did you meet them? I'm fairly certain I had some more qualitative goals, but I never articulated them to myself and doing so retrospectively seems ineffective. So I'll just say that my goal was to write the equivalent of 584 words per day, for a total of 213,160 words. Counting course assignments (hey, they are labors of love!), I wrote 207,525 words this year, 139,002 of which were for SPN. NEXT YEAR I'LL MAKE IT. I GET CLOSER EVERY TIME.

Do you have any for 2012? Quantitatively, same song, different verse. Only with the 584 words actually being written daily, rather than in fevered swatches separated by vast blank spaces.

What do you want to write? You mean in the wide scope of things? I want to write things that nobody wants to read, but they know they have to read. Not in the sense that they feel obligated, or like, 'goddamn I hate reading Terms of Service', but in the sense that, hm... The most important pieces of writing to me are the ones where I think, This is going to tear me down. And it's probably going to fuck me up a little. But this matters to me.

I don't necessarily want to write that tomorrow, or all the time (I don't think you can), but that's my goal. What I want to read is what I want to write.
Tags: fandom: spn, trufax, writing

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