Author Topic: Why do I notice small (dumb/normal) things in my own writing?  (Read 1896 times)

stridera

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Why do I notice small (dumb/normal) things in my own writing?
« on: August 06, 2009, 10:15:04 AM »
Recently, I've actually decided to buckle down and start writing my first novel.  (I started it well over five/six years ago but it got lost in the muddle of school/military/life/etc.)  Anyway, I'm writing in third person limited, and I keep getting distracted by small things.  For example, I noticed "he" everywhere in my text.  (The first scene involves him returning to his childhood home in the midst of a battle... so not much external dialog, just description and movement.)

So, first thing I do is look at other third person limited texts (Hills like White Elephants, by Hemmingway, for example) and now that I'm looking for it, I see other writers using 'he' about as much as I am.

So, now that you read all that... I guess the real question is... how do I train myself to ignore these things (and not stop writing to read other stuff... and post in a forum ;) and just keep writing?  Is it better to ignore everything I see (or think I see) and just keep going or is it better (since this is my first book and will probably be thrown away at the end anyway) to keep doing these side quests and call it a learning experience?  And, do hills really look like white elephants???  Aigh, the questions!

Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2009, 11:28:00 PM by stridera »
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WriterDan

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Re: Why do I notice small (dumb/normal) things in my own writing?
« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2009, 10:25:10 PM »
The most important thing to do when writing a first novel is to:  GET IT OUT.

Hands down, best advice I was ever given.  Don't worry about how it's coming out.  Just focus on the fact that it is.  Then when it's out, you can look at your writing, and the plot, and the characters, and make changes where you need to.  Just get it out, and it'll make your life one load easier.
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Chaos

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Re: Why do I notice small (dumb/normal) things in my own writing?
« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2009, 11:22:39 PM »
The most important thing to do when writing a first novel is to:  GET IT OUT.

Hands down, best advice I was ever given.  Don't worry about how it's coming out.  Just focus on the fact that it is.  Then when it's out, you can look at your writing, and the plot, and the characters, and make changes where you need to.  Just get it out, and it'll make your life one load easier.

I second that piece of advice. You don't want to end up like me, endlessly revising the beginning. You want to get it out on paper.

And finding "he" everywhere isn't always a bad thing. I've found some people get really annoyed when the viewpoint character's name is repeated too often. There appears to be a continuum of Proper nouns vs. pronouns :P
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Recovering_Cynic

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Re: Why do I notice small (dumb/normal) things in my own writing?
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2009, 08:09:29 PM »
I have to agree with all of the above.  If you are really worried about repeating the same word, or any other similar glitch you see repeating itself, you can always workshop it.  Just write away.
this is the way the world ends,
not with a bang, but a whimper
~T.S. Eliot