Okay I haven’t been with Scribophile for very long and the people I have met so far are really great people. I’ve been able to read some really fantastic stuff. In fact I’m in the process of following along and critiquing one novel in particular I’m excited about. I’m enjoying it that much. When it gets published, believe me you’ll hear about it on here but for now “mum’s the word” I’m afraid.
My issue is I’ve started making a few revisions of my opening scene for my novel in response to some of the critiques I’ve received and already it’s starting to no longer feel like my it’s my story anymore. I don’t know how to address that. I thought that I had sat on it long enough to separate my ego from it. The critiques didn’t offend me and only one kind of confused me so I decided to set that one aside to brew.
I guess my question is how do you balance between responding to critiques while remaining authentic to your story? I’m really starting to get the impression from this community that there isn’t an interest in a character driven story at all. I’m not setting driven. I’m not plot driven. I never will be. Deep inside the character is where I belong.
Yes, I wanted Surge of the Soul Eater to be plot driven, but I’m pretty certain the characters felt otherwise and took the damn thing over on me. And knowing me I most likely outlined the damned thing with this in mind too even before they took it over.
So is there a place for me in this world as a writer? Have book trends shifted in such a way I don’t belong as an author?
I don’t understand the obsession with setting. I feel like I’m missing something seriously important here. With character driven stories the setting isn’t important – the location can be anywhere, it’s arbitrary, so you only need enough to anchor the characters somewhere so they don’t feel like “floating heads” but I’m seeing everywhere – and not just my own work – “more details on the setting” and I don’t get it.
Even with Surge of the Soul Eater, everything that happens in it could happen anywhere in the universe and it wouldn’t change a damn thing for the chain of events in the story. It wouldn’t change anything for the characters. Really and truly. So why do I need to go into detail to the point of slowing down pacing – even putting action on hold – just to establish a setting that ultimately doesn’t fucking matter to the story?
It goes back to my question of: “If the main character doesn’t care enough to look at the leaves then why am I telling you the color of the leaves?”
What happened to giving the reader just enough to spark the imagination? What happened to giving the reader only what is needed? Why are we expected to spell everything out in ridiculous detail?