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  • Writer's pictureRosie J.

#IWSG: Surprise, surprise, surprise…

Updated: Oct 12, 2022


Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer – aim for a dozen new people each time – and return comments. This group is all about connecting!

Twitter handle is @TheIWSG and hashtag is #IWSG

The awesome co-hosts for the September 6 posting of the IWSG are Tyrean Martinson, Tara Tyler, Raimey Gallant, and Beverly Stowe McClure!

Click here to view everyone in the Blog Hop.


September 6 Question: Have you ever surprised yourself with your writing? For example, by trying a new genre you didn’t think you’d be comfortable in??

Yes. Yes. Yes. I surprise myself often. Sometimes it’s something as small as a good bit of dialogue or a fancy metaphor. Sometimes it’s finding a way to connect an earlier, seemingly insignificant detail at a later point in the WiP to turn it into a significant one. Sometimes characters surprise me. I know. I know. I write them. But we all know that characters have a mind of their own! Sometimes new plot bunnies surprise me. Or twists for current WiPs.

One of my biggest recent surprises came when I had the idea to turn my stand-alone thriller into a trilogy. I never wanted to write a trilogy or a series. I wanted it to be a stand-alone novel. I’ve been working on it for years, trying to rewrite it. The first draft is finished, but it’s always needed a major overhaul. I kept getting stuck with the rewrite, trying to decide how to do it and where to take it. Then, one day a week or so ago, I had this thought:  What if I make it two separate books? I’d already been considering a sequel to tie up loose ends for a new antagonist, so why not split the first book and make it into three altogether? It just made sense. And since the decision to turn it into a trilogy, my thoughts have turned from anxious and worried and forced to being excited and having a fluidity that they haven’t had before. I can succinctly pitch Book 1 now, where I couldn’t before. Honestly, trying to pitch this WiP in a Twitter pitch was what got me thinking about how it wasn’t working. I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t sum the book up in one neat little sentence, but now I can. I am surprised at how “at peace” I am with the decision to turn it into a trilogy. I have my work cut out for me, yeah, but I have direction.

Speaking of this WiP, it’s a thriller. I typically write fantasy. My first “novel” was called The Science Fiction (Isn’t Always Fiction). Dont judge me; I wrote it in late elementary and early middle school. Then, in high school, I started working on an urban fantasy based off Yahoo! Chat Ayenee role play. Throughout college, everything I worked on was fantasy. Then, in 2010, I got the idea for this undercover agent thriller. I’d never written anything non-fantasy before. Granted, my thriller still has some larger-than-life elements to it (think James Bond), but it’s not fantasy. There’s no magic. No supernatural beings. No immortals. There are real, normal people, who live and bleed and die. They may be able to kick ass more than the average Joe, but they’re still human.

The point is, I always wrote fantasy, up until the point when I decided to write this thriller. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to do it. That I wouldn’t be able to finish it or create a decent plot without extraordinary things happening, but you wanna know something? Something surprising? This thriller was the first novel length piece of writing that I ever wrote “The End” for. It’s my baby. My big accomplishment (despite writing The End on an urban fantasy since then). It showed me I didn’t have to stick to fantasy and that I had more than one story in me. I’ve been less afraid, since then, to branch out into other genres. Now I write in romance as well and am half-chasing after a horror plot bunny and a YA Paranormal.

If the story is in there, it should be written. No matter how outside the box or surprising it may be. Surprises in writing are good. Big or small. They keep us on our toes, and if we’re surprised, then the reader will be too. And, hopefully, that’s what keeps them coming back for more.


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