going in to this project i knew that a few things could happen –
- i could write total garbage
- derek could join me in writing said garbage
- we could write stories that we each really liked and were vastly different
or my one real worry about this project
- we could write stories that we were very happy with and then upon trading the stories realized we had written pretty much the same thing
well, so far, we are 0-for-1 in that respect. our january stories could not have been any more dissimilar. i don’t want to give too much away about the actual content of the stories until they are closer to being finished, but i think i am very pleased with how this project may turn out for the both of us.
we each deal with themes (on the january story topic of ‘a young man buys his first house, moving out of his parents place, only to become increasingly lonely and ends up moving back in with his parents’) of depression, anxiety, madness, and loss; but the different angles we came at those themes is what got me the most excited about this project in the first place.
derek wrote a little bit about his editing process, so i’ll give a little background on how i usually work in these situations.
when i was reading his novel, i ended up converting the word document and putting it onto my kindle so i could read it wherever i wanted. when i was going through it, i had a notebook with me where i would jot down all of the questions, comments, or errors i came across. i’d shoot derek an email every few days with what i had come up with, but of course, since i was in a different format if i said ‘on page 29 paragraph 4 …’ it was almost a guarantee that it would be nowhere near where it was in his copy. on my end, it was nice and easy, but to go back and make corrections on derek’s part was probably a real annoyance. i stand by my assertion that if he had a basic grasp of the english language it would have been much, much simpler for him.
since our stories are much shorter in length i’m going to go at it a little bit differently.
today, after i received the email with his january contribution, i printed that sucker out. i sat down on the couch, put my feet up and just read through it once to get a feel for the story he is trying to tell. after i finished the first read, i grabbed a pen and made a couple little notes about some things i came across that may have continuity issues and some other very minor tweaks. after a day or so, i’ll sit down with it again and really go through the story in more of an editorial mindset. we’ve set friday evening as when we are going to get on the phone and talk through the stories together. based on our stories it should be an interesting discussion.
i’ll be honest, during my first read through i didn’t come across a whole lot that needs to be improved on – derek’s shocking lack of knowledge of MMORPGs notwithstanding. it was a pretty solid read from start to finish, and for me to not pick up on where the story was heading until pretty much just before it happened is quite an accomplishment.
in other news, we have settled on what the february topic is going to officially be – A Time Travel Story Involving Teddy Roosevelt. now i know what you are all thinking, it’s been done a million times before. and while that may be true, i think that what we come up with will breathe fresh life into a genre verging on overkill. there was a brief conversation about the story involving fdr instead, but that would have just devolved in to both of us writing a great depression musical that i have been brainstorming for years.
but that’s a story for another time.