Tag Archives: amwriting

Sometimes Ya Gotta Change

Writing a book is an exercise in patience and resolve. At some point the end comes and whether it’s good or not, it’s time for revision after revision before it’s time to share it with someone else. At least, that’s been my experience.

With my Forgotten Chronicles Series, each book has been written with different methods that may or may not turn out for the best. You the reader will be the judge of that.

When I wrote The Selection, it was a NaNoWriMo novel written with very little planning ahead. If you’ve read it, you might pick up on some of the rambling sections or plot points that might not be as solid as I would’ve liked. I wholeheartedly believe it’s still an amazing story worth a read. The action is there and much of the world building was alive in my mind and continues to be so today. It was a story based off an idea I pitched to my wife and son. They thought it sounded interesting and that was that.

After it’s release and the positive response I received from the twenty or so brave souls who tried an unknown author, I started work on Rise of the Forgotten (my latest release). For that book, I wrote a three page outline detailing what and where I wanted the story to take place. The book is much more in-depth than The Selection and explores more of the world I introduced in the first book. The characters have more depth and the story follows four main storylines. Was the change in my approach worth it? You’ll have to tell me.

Sine right around Christmas, I’ve been working on the third book in the series, The War for Truth. This one has been tough so far. I wrote an outline like I did with Rise of the Forgotten, but several chapters in, I needed to change it. I then rewrote the outline, rewrote some of what I’d already done, and continued. A few chapters later, I had to revisit the outline and rearrange chapters to flow better. I also feel I’ve grabbed hold of plot issues early enough to work through them with greater efficiency and skill. I like the process I’ve developed with this book. It doesn’t feel like full-on plotting, but maybe it is. I still feel like I can be creative and not pigeonholed into the outline. It’s something I intend on using with future books.

I share all this because as a writer, it’s imperative to grow. I cannot stagnate with what used to work unless it was phenomenal. I tend to not believe I write the greatest books in the world, therefore I have to improve. Through this series alone, I’ve tinkered with my process so I can write the best story possible at the time.

I encourage you to re-evaluate your process and seek ways to improve. We can all be better.

If you wanna see my progress, feel free to pick up my books The Selection: The Forgotten Chronicles Book 1 (in ebook, paperback, or audiobook) and follow it up with Rise of the Forgotten: The Forgotten Chronicles Book 2 (in ebook or paperback). Let me know what you think.


Peeling Back the Layers

Since June, I’ve battled myself trying to figure out what the hell I’m doing. I’ve contemplated giving up this writing path I’ve chosen because honestly, who’s reading? Who cares? Am I any good? Am I another screaming mouth in a cacophony of unintelligible noise?

It’s been frustrating. All writers fall into this pit at times–I think. It’s not a fun place to be.

I’ve tried “faking it till I make it,” manufacturing enthusiasm for my work. I’ve started writing challenges, mostly for myself, to push me forward. It’s been a half-assed effort on my part. I want to succeed more than anything. I think about what I should be doing all the time. Then when I have the time after work or on the weekend what do I do? Not enough.

It’s like my give-a-damn has left, taken a vacation or something. I’ve been seeking it, hoping to corral it again, make it behave, make it submit to my will. Instead, it’s on the run like a fugitive leaving me taunting notes and thumbing its non-existent nose at me. I swear if I catch it, it will pay dearly for its behavior.

I’ve been struggling with who I am as a writer. Am I a genre writer? What the hell does that mean anyway? What qualifies me as a writer? Do I have the right skills? Am I a fraud? At a recent event I had an older guy (one who drank a bit too much) ask me “What qualifies you as an author?” I’ll be honest, his question stopped me in my tracks.

Just because I put words on a screen or paid to have them printed on paper with a colorful cover, did that make me an author? Anyone can do that. Is it because I revised and edited and revised my work again? Who declared me “Jason J. Nugent – Author” other than myself? Do I need someone else to say it for it to be real? If so then I’m judging my entire writing career on the approval of someone else.

But what I write, I do for myself. The stories I create, the worlds I visit, the characters I interact with–I do that for me because I love it. I do it because I enjoy escaping to my worlds, my people, and my imagination. I suppose if I want to be successful I have to keep the reader in mind, and I do, but ultimately what fuels me is creation. My ability to craft stories I’ll enjoy leads me to eventually share them with others and build that same level of enthusiasm.

So why tell you this? Why whine about it to you my dear reader? Cause I can. Cause maybe out of the few that care, you’ll understand and not judge me too harshly. And mostly because I need to vent. I don’t normally share these kinds of internal thoughts and figured “what can I lose?”

It’s been difficult but those that have stayed with me over the years and even recent converts–THANK YOU! Writing is lonely but it’s awesome when you jump on board with me. I hope you’ll stay and find something valuable in what I do. If so, let me know!

End of Summer Reflection

For the past couple months I’ve been all over the place with writing. Do I keep at it? Do I continue to share with others? Should I stop? Hey, let’s build a Fantasy world for a new novel! Write every day!

Yeah, I’ve covered it all.

I did come to the conclusion that I enjoy writing even if no one else likes it. I think about my current projects all day. It gives me something to expend my increasingly failing intelligence on. Instead of succumbing to the latest episode of Impractical Jokers (thanks for that son!) I use my grey matter to explore new worlds and new people with new problems.

Not that there’s anything wrong with entertainment to escape reality. I mean, that’s what reading is, right? But I’d like to think my efforts are not without long term consequences.

When I started writing many moons ago, it was because I enjoyed creating something original. Something that would succeed or fail on my merits. No one else’s. There’s something freeing yet terrifying about that.

This summer has been a long exercise in patience and learning. I’ve changed how I write and made it a priority instead of an “I’ll get to it when I get to it” activity. I start my days reading and with dedicated time to add new words to stories. I started the Summer of Writing because I needed a push forward. It’s been amazing how undeterred determination improved my outlook on this fascinating craft I love.

Now I’m growing excited as I’ve spent many weeks building a fantasy world I intend on writing about within the coming week. I’ve spent more time on the outline and character creation and overall world building than I’ve ever done. I’ve attempted fantasy novels before but always falter about 10,000 words in. Not this time. I’m setting myself up for success. I hope you’ll stick with me as I build this world and share it with you.

In early October I’ll be releasing a new collection of short stories and couldn’t be more thrilled with the project. I’ll be revealing more info soon. (Better yet, sign up to my email list and be one of the first to know!)

Thanks for your time. Thanks for sticking with me in my moments of doubt. Thanks for your continued support.

(Almost) Average Anthology – Jason Nugent

It has taken me too long to review this book, but now seems the perfect time to do so. I’ve been a fan of this author for some time now, though this is his first book. I’ve had the distinct pleasure of reading his past works and have thoroughly enjoyed watching him grow and develop […]