This is the last set of questions from my visit to Westview Elementary. I have been surprised by the level of questions the students have posed and have enjoyed answering them. Here are the last five questions.
1. What if you don’t know what to do at the end?
There is a saying that the end is in the beginning. The main goal that the character wants to achieve must be figured out by the end. If it was resolved, but you kept writing, it’s time to do some editing. If you are not sure what your character wants to accomplish you probably have to rewrite the beginning. It’s in the beginning that the main goal is set. Through the middle conflict gets in the way of meeting that goal. By the end, the character has figured out how to solve the problem and reach the goal. If you’re having a problem with the end, look at the beginning.
2. What kind of story is it?
The story I am writing is historical fiction novel for middle grades. It’s historical fiction because the setting of the story is a true historical event, but the characters are made up. True history and setting + fictional main characters = historical fiction. It is intending for students in fourth through sixth or seventh grade.
3. Why does it take so long to write a story?
It depends. Short stories don’t take very long. Novels take longer. If a person writes for six or more hours a day, the story gets done faster. If they are inconsistent it will take longer.
4. How long have you been writing?
Most of what I have written has been academic, meaning I did it because I had to for school. Even so, I still liked it. I enjoy the relaxation that writing brings me when it’s going well and overcoming the frustration when it isn’t. I liked proving my point through writing. I also appreciated the things I learned through research. There is no better feeling than the one that comes upon completion! Now, I entertain myself when I create a scene of my book. I didn’t start writing for the purpose of creating a manuscript to publish until a few years ago.
5. How do you publish it?
There are two major routes. The first is self-publish either online or pay a company to turn your manuscript into a book. When you self-publish you are completely on your own with producing a great story. The other way is to go through a publishing house. Most publishing houses don’t take work from just anyone, so a writer needs to find an agent who will help get their books to an editor at a publishing house. Another way to get access to a publishing house is to attend conferences where publishers also attend and invite you to submit your story to them. They do this at writer’s conferences because they know that the people who attend are serious about their story and making it the best that they can.
That’s it, folks! Thanks for the great questions.
Stop by anytime and enjoy Playing with Words!