For this year's Genius Hour, I will be writing a fictional short story and synopsis to eventually enter in the Texas Teen Book Fest writing competition. I love writing, especially fiction. I haven't written a story in a while and I think such a large challenge (9000-140000 words) will help me get back into the swing of things. I'm looking forward to coming up with characters and backstories and developing my own style of writing. I hope while writing this, I can improve what little writing skills I have and come up with my own story that people will enjoy. Hopefully by the end of the year, I'll have the synopsis of the story and a good start on the actual story. The hard part will actually be sitting down and writing it, so I plan on working on the story once a week. That will be the time I actually sit down and focus on nothing but the story. I also plan on working throughout the week, just here and there. I might contact another writer to get input as well. My goal right now is to write half a page to a page every week, so we'll see how that goes.
This week, I learned that there is a whole lot that goes into a story. There are so many things that you need to do but you can't do too much of. Characters have to be complex, but not too complex. There is a format for all short stories that make them developed. It is so difficult for me to sit down and write in order. The very vague story line I have come up with is about this society where if you show any flaws (ex: OCD, schizophrenia, dwarfism, etc.), you are sent off to a mental asylum. The story will mainly focus on Fitz, a 19 year old boy with OCD who gets taken to Syphrenia, the mental ward, and is determined to get back to his family and life because he is convinced that nothing is wrong with him. He meets other patients and eventually, they escape the ward and it leads to a whole bunch of exciting and deadly adventures. So far, all I have are short snippets from different points in the story. I think it is because I am not very good at starting things. When it comes to me, once I get started, I'm on a roll, it is just the challenge of getting started. I've learned that with myself, I've can't have any distractions and just have to go for it. I used two websites and a video about formatting a short story this week. From here, my goal is to write, write, and write some more.
This week, I have learned that writing takes a gosh awful lot of effort. You say that you can just whip up a story but there is so much that goes into it. Now, I knew this going in, but I don't think I actually comprehended it until I started. Writing a synopsis is actually quite hard when you can't think of a logical ending. For me, I have learned that I need constant assurance and validation that what I am writing is somewhat decent. I also have this really big problem of not actually writing. I can have an idea and I can write it down, but for me to actually sit in front of this computer and type logical words in order that make sense. I haven't used my sources much this week, actually. I do not have that long to get this thing done, so I've been focusing on just writing and getting a basic story down. So far, I have only written 2500 words and the minimum is 9000. What I have written is only the first sort of chapter, and I am afraid that I am going to run out of words because the maximum amount of words I can have is 14000. I have started my tumblr blog, but there isn't much that I can post, but I'll try.
I have not really learned much anything new about my topic. My genius hour is solely product based, and it is the same product just continued over a course of time. I can tell you that I have a main story line (ish) and am doing my best to write to that. Basically, the main character just got to the mental ward place and is meeting everyone. I'm totally going to run out of room before I leave the story where I need it to be and maybe that's a good thing. I know specific events that need to happen after they escape, but really it is all kind of up in the air right now. For me, I have once again confirmed I am the biggest procrastinator when it comes to starting things. Once I get going, I can write quite a bit, but it is really hard for me to actually start. I don't use any research anymore because now it's just writing. I keep forgetting about my tumblr page that I said I would do, so now I really need to work on that. I also need to write quite a crap ton in a short amount of time. Even if it isn't due until the summer for the competition, I still want to have a synopsis and a good way into the story done by the end of school. I really need to write this weekend.
This week, I finally figured out an ending to my story. It is kind of a cop-out ending, but I was running out of time. I am still glad that I figured something out though. Writing a story is a really daunting task that takes hours and a lot of dedication. I have once again confirmed that I push everything to the very last minute. I wrote my synopsis in on sitting because I needed it done, and instead of writing my story, I watched Criminal Minds. It was a good episode, but I told myself that I would write and I totally ignored myself. Hopefully, it will get done in time. No sources again this week. I have had to research some diseases and disorders and what they are, though. In the story, I have a person have a psychotic breakdown, and I had to research what that was like. I'll have to do that for a lot of illnesses down the road. I fixed my tumblr and added more posts. I added more of inspirations and books and writing styles that I enjoy. It's looking pretty good now. All I have left to do is finish my story and add a few more posts to my tumblr, and I'm done.