Renewed hope (aka. sisters are the best!)

This week and especially weekend, my mind has been engulfed with thoughts. Page after page of my Moleskine have been filled with frantic scribbling. I’ve basically been obsessed with figuring out the plot to this new idea (mentioned a few posts ago.)

Without going into the long (kinda humiliating) details, I had the setting and the characters, but I needed a plot. Bear in mind, I have been feeling a little, let’s say shaky about my prospects of getting an agent. “So,” I said to myself. “If I’m starting from scratch with this plot anyway, why don’t I make it a *insert current YA trend* story? Ah, how much more marketable it would be! How the agents would clamor for it!”

So I tried. I tried and I tried and I tried to make it work, but surprise, surprise, IT DIDN’T. Of course, I had to have my two sisters (especially Becca, who is the bomb) gently slap some sense into me.

LESSON LEARNED: You really have to write the story you love. Even if it might not seem as marketable. Even if you are scared. Even if you are not sure you can pull it off.

If I had tried to add the *current YA trend* plotline, I would have ruined the very setting and characters that I fell in love with when I came up with the idea.

So, now I proceed forward with renewed hope. Seriously, my heart feels as light as a feather! I love my sisters, Becca and Diana! They are the best. Oh, and Ben helped too. When I told him about the *current YA trend* plotline he said (direct quote) “It’s not awful.” 🙂 You gotta appreciate his honesty.

***I can’t wait to get started on my new idea!! Woo hoo!!****



  1. Natalie on November 24, 2008 at 5:51 am

    Yay! So wait, what is this current YA plot trend? I’m just curious. Have I done it? I feel like a nerd.

    Anyway, it’s true. You have to write what you write and not think about anything else. I’m so glad that everything worked out. Now get to work! I wanna read more Renee stuff:)

  2. JaneyV on November 24, 2008 at 7:50 am

    Also the thing to remember is that between writing a book, finding an agent and then getting published it can be a couple or more years by which time *current YA trend* will be yesterday’s pizza. You are right Renee – write the book you love and all else will follow!

  3. Terri Tiffany on November 24, 2008 at 1:27 pm

    Yay! I;m so glad to hear you are happy about what you are writing! I think we have to write what we love and if we do–it will shine through. I don’t care for my first book–but my second–I can really get into the plot.
    Will be happy to hear how it comes along–and yay for sisters!

  4. Joanne on November 24, 2008 at 4:18 pm

    When you put your heart into your writing, the reader feels it. Kudos to you, happy writing!

  5. Renee Collins on November 24, 2008 at 6:47 pm

    Natalie-:) No, you haven’t used the plot trend. In fact, there is nothing wrong with it, it just wouldn’t work with my setting and characters.

    I was trying to add a paranormal element. Not vampires, but close. Anyway, the plotline would work on it’s own, but not smashed into the story I already had envisioned.

    Janey-True, true. I mean, really, writing for a trend is dangerous because there is just as much of a chance that an agent will be sick of seeing stories like it.

    Terri-I’m really hoping that my love for this idea will shine through. The idea is a bit unconventional, so I’m really, really hoping that it works. 🙂

    Joanne-Thanks. It’s going to be fun to write, and that what matters. (Of course, it would be great if readers loved it too.)

  6. Kasie West on November 24, 2008 at 8:31 pm

    Yay for new ideas and sticking with what we love. You can’t go wrong when you love what you are writing.

  7. giddymomof6 on November 24, 2008 at 11:23 pm

    Okay YAY! You listened to your sisters! That’s awesome! The only thing that got me my agent… I know, because I sent out 50 queries, and none of them nibbled until I added this tidbit to my query letter (never been done before) as soon as I added that Agents were queuing up to read my MS! LOL! heheheh! I just didn’t figure it out until the last 10 or so I sent out. Do you have a writing partner? Someone to kick your butt–plus beg for more? Someone who you read their stuff too and then feel guilty when you haven’t written anything yet that day? LOL! My writing partners have been awesome–we’re a trio–and it works well.. well it must! I’ve written four books in 8 months! LOL! And I’m positive i couldn’t do it without their help and advice! If you wanna join us, you’re more than welcome! One of us are ALWAYS working on a story so we’re great motivation!

  8. Renee Collins on November 25, 2008 at 12:30 am

    Kasie-Thanks. I think you’re right. 🙂

    giddymom-That’s awesome about your query. I wish I could find a magical addition like that. lol.

    Also, I think that’s awesome that you have a group of writers. 4 books in 8 months is pretty amazing! They must be good. 🙂

    I am part of an online writers group. We call ourselves the MoMos. :)They are amazing and it’s so great to have someone to share work with and complain about querying to. (Not that I don’t do enough of that on this blog.) I just wish we all lived around each other.

    But, anyway, thanks for inviting me to your group. That’s so nice! 🙂

  9. cindy on November 25, 2008 at 1:08 am

    i could never write to market, either. writing a novel is SO hard. then you revise it 12 times between you and your agent and your editor. you had better LOVE it.

    write what calls you. this sounds exciting. good luck!

  10. Renee Collins on November 25, 2008 at 4:22 am

    lol, it’s so true, Cindy. As much as I loved Midas when I started to write it, by the end of revisions, I was pretty much sick of it. And I can only imagine that it would be worse after the agent, then editor revisions.

  11. Kiersten on November 25, 2008 at 4:51 pm

    I’m too late to say anything original, other than, write what you want to, and if it is good, the market will make room for it ; ) Which we already know you can do!

  12. candicekennington on November 25, 2008 at 7:35 pm

    I firmly believe that you have to enjoy your writing first before anyone else will. The times that I truly write what I love are the times when my readers say things like, “that was your best chapter so far.” When you love what you’re writing you transfer the magic in your head to magic on paper.

  13. Renee Collins on November 25, 2008 at 7:44 pm

    Thanks, Kiersten. 🙂

    And Candice, you bring up a good point. I’ve had that same experience too. It seems to always be the case that the strongest scenes are the ones that you could barely type fast enough because you were loving it so much.

  14. Terri Tiffany on November 26, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving and I am so jealous that you grew up in Hawaii!!

  15. Joanne on November 26, 2008 at 5:16 pm

    Just stopping by to wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy …

  16. Renee Collins on November 26, 2008 at 7:21 pm

    Thanks Terri. 🙂 Yeah, Hawaii was wonderful. I’m dying to get back there one of these days.

    Thanks Joanne! 🙂

  17. Jill Wheeler on November 26, 2008 at 8:49 pm

    Thank you so much for stopping by my blog and commenting. It’s funny that your comment came right when I needed it. I’m starting to edit, and I’m thinking, “Should I even finish this? I wish someone would just tell me my writing sucks so I would know to quit now.” (Yeah, writers have funny mood swings, huh?) But your comment inspired me to keep going. Thank you so much for that.

    So, as far as plot line, maybe save that paranormal idea for your next book. I take it you’re a character first, plot later sort of person? Perhaps it would help to think about your characters’ greatest desires and fears and let the plot come out of that? Then you can throw them into some situations they’d have to grow in.

    I’m off to read some more of your blog. 🙂

  18. Renee Collins on November 26, 2008 at 9:36 pm

    Hi Jill. I’m so glad that my comment helped. :)I go through those writer mood swings myself. Almost daily.

    Well, I think you should definitely finish editing that story. From what I read, you have real talent!

    Also, I really like your suggestion about finding the plot for my story. That’s a really good idea. So thanks!