What an odd sort of feeling.
I wonder if other writers see an evolution of sorts as they grow older, semi-wiser, and (hopefully) more confident and carefree.
I started my first novel, Corn and Shadows, waaaay back in 2003.
Holy shit. I just reread what I just typed. 2003. Two years short of 20 years ago.
But I digress.
I’ve been done with my first novel for years now, sending it out now and then to publishers but planning on offering it for free on Amazon or something.
THAT novel sounded like me. It still does.
I wrote the follow up novel, Time and Shadows, back in 2006. That one is finished too, although I keep peeking at it now and then to “tidy” it up.
I wrote a third novel, A Gentleman’s Shadows, telling the story of Time and Shadows from a 1895 male’s point of view, at the beginning of 2019. What a time jump. That book was fun. That was creative and curliqued as I tried to write as a turn of the century man would.
I’m happy with all three.
I’ve been thinking about the one I started back in 2007 about Emerald Le Roque and her following an Elven man through a cornfield to another world. I liked the idea — still do — but I think I got stuck on where to go once she got there. I think it was supposed to be super sexy but I ran out of super sex juice or something.
So I opened the dusty document and started reading it again, and I began to wonder — who wrote this? It isn’t the same style, the same cadence, the same feel as my previous works.
I know every painting is different. Every vase and cup is different. Depending on the time of day, water quality, temperature, atmospheric pressure, lifestyle and mood, every creation is its own entity.
So it is with different writings from different periods.
I wrote my latest novel about my “trip” to Paris in 2020. The second one is a work in progress, 2021. This style, too, is different, but in a much more positive way. It’s more upbeat, fun, and a tad more loopy than my other serious writings.
But that middle one about Emerald …
I don’t think I’m going to try and resurrect that one. Good idea for the time — but the times are a changin’. ~I~ am a changin’.
It’s more like my writing attitude has changed. I’m not as sour with my point-of-view as I was back then. I am still an escapist, a fantasy writer, but I’m not as bitter with the world as my main character was/is. I can still write about loneliness and magic and relationships, and even make my main character a crab at first and a delight at the end.
But there’s something about that world way back then that doesn’t feel right anymore. No need to fix something that’s broke — it really is more like leaving her on her own to deal with the Elves in her own way.
Are you ever less-than-satisfied with projects you once started and thought about finishing?
Do you finish it anyway? Or move on to something different?