A thread in which I muse about writing, including why I can't seem to do it.
@Jringo1508 @WriteGrlProbs you can help me figure out where I'm right or wrong, but don't just blow "You can do it!" smoke up my butt.
A few days ago I mentioned that I had started reading a book that was already clearly going to be filled with bad writing, but also had a decent enough plot to keep me reading.
And, boy! The writing *was* bad.
It was using the "Replay" concept of going back to a previous point in life every time the main character died, including the fact that things were slightly different each time.
The plot was that the main character had to figure out who was a murderer.
The question of who *was* the murderer kept me reading the book.
The author did a pretty good job of making 3 different people fairly likely suspects at different times.
But the thing that kept the book going was the main character was stupid.
I mean *really* stupid.
She knew another girl was going to die on a specific date, and waited *until* that day to do anything about it.
And her only solution was to invite the potential victim to a party.
Multiple times.
Through multiple lives, she never really made any effective attempt to figure out who was doing the killing.
There were a dozen ways should could have set it up better.
At one point, a suspect has red stuff all over his jeans, and suspiciously says it couldn't be blood. She gets on herself.
She goes into her house, and uses a wet towel to get it off her clothes.
Then she spends half the next day trying to see if his clothes have blood on them.
WHY did she not just go look at her clothes? or the wetted towel?

No idea. Just stupid.

Oh, and he throws away the clothes in a garbage bag, she says she can't take them from his garbage right away, goes inside to wait, forgets the garbage collectors come early that day.
The book has 360 ratings, at an average of exactly 4 stars.
She has about 10 books done.
What I learned from this book:
1) you can make a plot work by having your main character be stupid.
2) you can justify the stupidity if you just throw in some half-assed justification about "missing my babies" or "his hair looked *really* good, maybe he's a nice guy this time."
I can't understand a 4-star average. I can't understand how people bought the sequels...although, gratifyingly, the sequels all have less than ratings.
On the other hand, I finished the book.
Even worse, I got the 1st book a few other series to check her ability...they *are* free
So how this applies to me:
I want to be a writer.
I first tried to write a story when I 11. It sucked. I tried to write a novel when I was 15. Didn't get more than a few pages into it.
I want to be a *good* writer.
I read something like Cherryh's Cyteen, and I want to write something as good. I see how the end of one of the Morgaine books sets up a great Calvary To the Rescue emotional point, and I want to do that in a book.
My problem: I can't turn off the editor when I write.
I've completed a few stories, but I can't write a plot and stick to it until I finish.
If I plot it all out, well before I'm finished, the plot resolution seems stupid and obvious to me.
If I don't, then I can't think of one.
I find it REALLY hard to write what I think is a bad book or a bad story.
Plot is difficult.
Just like in music, you have to approach the discordant moments carefully, so they make sense. Then you have to resolve them in a way that makes sense.
You have to understand human nature really well to make it seem realistic.
You have to have tension. You have to have some conflict. Things can't be easy.

I'm going to be a little unfair here, but I sort of skimmed into the Pulp-Rev crowd a little, and just go turned off.
Sure, there were heroics, but in almost every case, the hero was never threatened
To be honest, it's one of the problems I have even with the original pulp, like Edgar Rice Burroughs. You never have any doubt that John Carter can kill 100,000 green men without even breathing heavy.
He's never fatigued, he's never really challenged.
He's saved by a dog-like creature that is intensely loyal because he's the only one who has ever thought that maybe you might just get better effects by treating an animal with care rather than abuse.
I've had that problem with other "amateur" (meaning, published without going through the vetting process of a Big Publisher) writers:
There's a problem, the protagonist thinks of something really obvious, and is immediately successful, and no one else ever thought of it before.
There was one book about someone who gets forced onto a space merchant ship, and then starts investing his own money in goods, and gets rich and becomes the ship's head trader, and no one ever thought of doing that before?
The trade decisions are simplistic/elementary, btw.
My frustration is:
I want to write, but when I think of what might be a good idea, and start writing, I either think of things that seem more likely as I'm writing, changing the plot to the point the original is unworkable, or I stick with it until the plot seems stupid to me.
I have ideas I want to share through writing, like Cherryh.
I also know message fiction is a bore.
So that just makes plotting even more difficult. I want to approach the points I want to put into the story VERY carefully, so I don't seem preachy.
So I finally decided, fine: I *won't* be a writer.
And then I encounter a book like this.

I know that anything one does, one gets better at.

If I could accept bad writing, I could finish something. And then use what I learn to make the next one better.
I can't seem to finish to get to the point where I can learn.
Okay, the end.
No response to this is really necessary. It's a rhetorical thread. Venting *and* whining.
@physicsgeek You are one of the few I willingly recognize is a more avid reader than me.
Have you tried writing?
If so, do you have the same problems?
If not, why not?

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More from @Gitabushi

23 Nov
If you care to, you will be able to watch me make a political paradigm change in real time.
Basically, with the ascendancy of @AOC and The Squad, and the obvious intent of The COVID Lockdown to get more people hooked on Govt subsidy, and then correspondingly increase taxes, I just figured the US Left was pretty clearly Socialist.
However comma...
Someone made the argument yesterday or the day before that Democrats have no understanding of what the means of production are, have no intent to seize it, don't want a classless society, etc., etc., etc., yadda yadda.
Meaning, they are agnostic about several Socialist elements.
Read 17 tweets
23 Nov
Fellow conservatives, moderates, and GOPers:
The Left thinks their *best* (and maybe *only*) chance to win is to run against Trump.
They are going to use the same playbook to get him nominated, and then shift to lying about him to re-toxify him afterwards.
IF THIS HAPPENS, don't fall for it.
Don't let your dislike of Trump sway you.
As much as you dislike Trump, they loathe him a million times worse.
If they manage to get him nominated, PUNISH them with another Trump administration.
There are plenty of reasons another Trump administration would not be ideal.
Set that aside.
First, Democrats being in power is an Existential crisis for the US. As @AndToddsaid the United States is at war with America. The Deep State is trying to destroy the American Dream.
Read 16 tweets
18 Nov
Brainfertilizer's/Gitabushi's 4th Law:
Every insult/dis that leaves a mark on Leftists will become THE go-to insult for the Left to use within 6 months.

This one is too wordy, and kinda too stupid to be a law, but the applications of it matter enough to still explain.
At one point, someone responded to some stupid Leftist proposal saying "That won't work, because Math".
It became popular.
Then a few months later, Democrats/Leftists would criticize a tax cut or respond to some conservative criticism with "because math".
It took a few months before Democrats took up calling conservatives "snowflakes" and asking us if were "triggered" or telling us to "cry more".
Read 40 tweets
18 Nov
I support Jews.
Anti-Semitism is wrong because it is racist, but it is also a special kind of racism because of its specificity, the history of the world, and the pervasiveness of it.
I don't know many Jews. I haven't lived in many places I could encounter many Jews.
I didn't care that much one way or the other for most of my life.
The Holocaust was history, and we'll make sure it never happens again, right?

But I started noticing what Israel was dealing with in the run up to the Liberation of Iraq in 2003.
Read 23 tweets
18 Nov
Brainfertilizer's/Gitabushi's 3rd Law:
Tough Love is the only *TRUE* compassion

This one is kind of self-explanatory.
But I'll explain it anyway.
Any assistance is a crutch.
Any assistance makes it easier for people to stay in a bad situation.
Democrats talk about Compassion a lot. It is ALWAYS using your money in *their* name to buy votes.
There is NO END to the number of problems they can solve with just a little bit more of your money.
Read 22 tweets
18 Nov
Brainfertilizer's/Gitabushi's 2nd Law:
Everyone is Progressive/Socialist about their Biggest Financial Worry.
I started developing this one when I saw several college-graduate "conservatives" arguing that the GOP should back student loan forgiveness.
It deepened and strengthened when I saw "conservatives" talk somewhat happily about how they were going to spend their stimulus check.
Read 16 tweets

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