Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Taboo

Despite all the books and posts that I've read by writers who claim that the key to writing without inhibition is to just press onwards as if you are the only one who is going to read your work, I am reminded again that a second draft is definitely the place where the messy mock-up of my book will be refined and all the clunky, questionable content is altered or removed altogether.

For an explanation: I must remember that parents will always be parents. No matter what I write, my mother will look at the work through the lens of being my mother. This is a good thing, but it is also a terrifying thing for me as a writer because whenever I give her something to read, I know that some pieces of it may be seen as taboo to her simply because I am her son. I was sneaky and took a peek at some of her notes in my current manuscript and spotted one in a chapter that I knew - even during the moment that I wrote that scene - that she would be stopped at. The scene involves a group of girl friends shopping and trying on clothes. Of course, the topic turns to potential love interests, and I'm sure imaginations can do the rest!

It's a fine line between censoring yourself as a storyteller and making sure that you aren't putting something too vulgar into a work that it will deter your target audience. I'm not completely sure what my target audience will be, but I know that it will definitely be made up of people who enjoy paranormal romances. I suppose there are things you can get away with, and even if someone doesn't like an element you've placed in your narrative - be it a line that someone says, a plot twist, or even a comment on society - it's up to the author of the work to make the final say in what stays and what goes during the second draft. I can't wait to get to that point!