Proud to be part of this Wattpad Open Novella Contest, and totally amazed to find my story through to the final stage of judging. Entries close in another week and final judging will be some weeks later, I believe.
The requirement has been for a 20,000+ word story from prompts Wattpad provided in all genres. This story has been made up of 2,000 words in January, 8,000 in February and a staggering 12,ooo here in March. I know it’s not as difficult for some who are accustomed to writing the much longer novels, but it has been truly ‘staggering’ writers like myself, who choose ‘flashers’ and/or short stories. With word counts from maybe 100, and 500 and sometimes a couple of thousand, these suit my butterfly brain admirably. [We won’t mention that I call it my severely burnt-wing moth mind when I’m having a dark creative or editing day!]
I love my story so much, despite its humongous challenges, both in length and presentation – being a story within a story. I want to do the best job I’m capable of right now. Better than my best, actually. The aim has been to write a bedtime story that was as entertaining to the out-loud reader as it was for the child being read to. I wanted to show the natural curiosity of a child who’s learning about his world the only way he knows how… by constantly interrupting and asking. And the sibling and parents who provide the answers… with love and amazing patience.
I also wanted to introduce some thinking about attitudes, empathy, problem-solving, teamwork, etc., etc. in a safe and friendly ‘family-atmosphere’ kind of way. It’s turned out quite an ask, but I love it. Now all deadlines have been met, and although I still have several chapters I want to write to finish my story, I’m pleased with my direction, my achievement so far.
And then the edits, rethinks and rewrites will begin. The best part of that stage will be the luxury of taking these all-important steps in my own time – no restrictions on how long it takes. Just for now, it’s wonderful to let it simply sit and gravitate.