"Dear Vonnie" Writing Partner

Each Saturday, I will do my best to answer any questions you may throw at me. I don't pretend to be an expert, but I know it's not easy being a writer, a wife, and mother. It can be frustrating and discouraging, yet very rewarding. I'd be glad to listen to you, pray for you, and share some of my thoughts with you.

So, ask me something... anything... **Contact Me**

Dear Vonnie,

I contacted a friend that I met through ShoutLife (A Christian Networking Site) who is also a “writer” and we are currently developing a story to write together and publish online. My idea. He’s a year or two younger then me and has the same taste in writing as I do. So I thought it would be great and a lot of fun.

Well everything WAS going great. We had decided to do something like what TV shows do, in particular LOST, and come up with an outline of where we want to see the story go, develop the characters and then take turns writing and editing the chapters.

We are still in the developing the story stage and I’m already regretting picking this friend as a partner. ...he didn’t want to know (about Plot Webbing). I said okay, that’s fine. But he went on to say that he didn’t want to learn anything more about writing or plotting. For me that was red flag number one...

And then he throws out the fact that he wrote – so far – a seven chapter novel and that was good and he didn’t use any plotting...

So at the end of our conversation I ask are we still going to do the plotting and the note/idea taking part? And he says yes but he isn’t going to get too involved in the plotting and that he isn’t going to come up with any “elaborate” ideas.

So I want to know, what should I do? Am I just being picky about the plotting part? or should I try to get out of it? Or should I just stick with it for a while longer? Maybe this was just a bad day or something...

But I’m afraid I’m going to end up doing all the work, with none of the added benefits of having a co-author...I’m also leaning toward the while longer because I don’t know too many writers that have my same tastes and that want to co-author something and publish it online.

I guess should I just talk to him and discuss my concerns? Should I layout the guidelines to our writing together again and see if he still wants to work together?

Made a Mistake?

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

First of all, ...I'm honored that you asked me a writing question. Thanks!

Wow...this is a very touchy situation! Once you get into an agreement with someone, it's hard to get change your mind and back out, keeping your friendship intact.

You say that you met this person online. I know that these friendships can be very real, but they can also be deceptive. I don't know how long you have known this young man, but apparently you didn't know his writing style.

I understand that you want to be a "big brother" type person to him, and that's great! You would be a good role model for him. There may be some things, besides writing, that you can teach him.

I think it would be good to make a plan for your writing project. Perhaps you can assign a character to him or a subplot that doesn't have to follow your plot too closely. There are various ways to co-author.

I don't know what all is at stake besides the writing of this story. It seems the friendship is more important. Talk to him; try to work out something that you both can agree on. I also suggest that you don't get too uptight over the book itself. Let it be an adventure and see where it takes you!

I hope this helps you.

1 comment:

The Surrendered Scribe said...

This is great information for any writer.


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