Evolution of a Story

Fremont St, NV; Photo Credit: Doree Weller

Fremont St, NV; Photo Credit: Doree Weller

It always fascinates me how stories evolve over time.  I got the idea for what would eventually be Lost Vegas around 2005, at the last writer’s conference I went to.  It was long before I started this blog, but I had an idea to start a blog and put up a “serial” story.  I’ve revisited the idea several times, but the fact is that I’m just too lazy to do it.  That requires discipline, and time… two things I lack.

In any case, some elements of the story stayed the same over time.  Rebecca hunts monsters, and Kevin is the computer geek who helps her.  Rebecca is small, with brown eyes and brown hair.  But that’s pretty much where the resemblance to the original story ends.

I had actually written around 20,000 words of a different version when I realized it wasn’t quite working for me and mostly scrapped it, starting over.  In total, I have about 10 different versions of this story.  When I finally started getting to know Rebecca and Kevin better, the story followed them.  Scrapping the story wasn’t actually as hard as I would have thought, since I was really focused on making it the best version I possibly could.  I never could have imagined when I started what this story would turn into.

Lost Vegas is the story that I’ve entered in the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Contest.  I’ll know on March 18th if I’ve progressed to the next round of judging or not.  Keep your fingers crossed for me or send positive vibes into the universe.

Chaos and Contests

I just wanted to do a quick update.  I know I’ve been sporadic about blogging lately, and I miss it, so I wanted to tell all y’all what’s going on.

First, the new job is still stressful, and I’m still adjusting.  I think I’ve almost got it down now though, so hopefully I won’t use that as an excuse too much longer.  

Second, I’ve been fighting off my third round of this weird cold that’s going around.  I learned that it’s called a “crud.”  Yep, look it up.  It really is.

Third, and most important, I was getting my entry together for the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Contest.  I’m super excited about this.  Amazon does an annual contest, and the grand prize, as well as a few first prizes, are publication.  I read one of the contest winners from last year, On Little Wings by Regina Sirois, and it was a great book.  I plan to work my way through other previous winners, but the point is that they publish good stuff.  On March 18th, 2000 entries will move into the next round of judging.  They only accept 10,000 entries, so that’s a pretty significant number that have been dropped in the first round.  On April 14th, 500 entries will move into the next level of judging, and the public gets to rate the excerpts.

I’ll keep you posted, even if I don’t make the first cut.  I think it’s really important for readers to support contests like this, because as an author, it can feel incredibly difficult to get noticed.  When readers take the time to look at contest entries, you’re telling publishers clearly what you find interesting.

So, that’s my excuse for not blogging.  But no worries; I hope to get back to it this week.  🙂