Is it wrong to ask for feedback on a part of a novel I haven’t written yet?
Not a problem of second-guessing, but of wanting to get it right the first time – it is a “delicate” scene, and the action of this book hinges on the “action” of this scene, and I believe that people’s perceptions of the book overall will hinge on how they mentally digest this scene.
Or maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about. I barely know what my books are “about” when they’re finished, how am I to know what they’re about before they become formed?
This novel is actually quite an accomplishment for me to be writing at all (and I hope saying this doesn’t jinx or otherwise stifle me) in that I already know how it ends. I have seen the scene that closes the book very vividly in my mind. It’s the sort of imagery that once it enters my mind does not leave again, the sort of intensity of visual that, were it applied to a horrific scene in a horror movie in half a dozen frames of film (a quarter of a second or so) could turn people’s stomachs. And I know some of who is there, so I can see that I must in the intervening words, ensure that they arrive at that scene. And I know some of the things that happen in between.
And in the past, knowing even this little about a story I wanted to write might have prevented words from leaking out of my mind beyond an outline or a few notecards covered in descriptions of characters and settings and story arcs and relationships and … and then the novel never comes. But here I am, writing it.
And I know I’ve been telling people for weeks now that “the next scene is a long sex scene” and haven’t managed to write the 2-3k words that transition into it yet – though I’m most of the way there, now that I’m getting my momentum back. But I’m fighting it, and I’m getting to the scene, and intensely erotic fiction… my mind is specially attuned to that, I think.
But yes, I’ve petitioned the community for feedback – check the NaNoWriMo Arizona-Phoenix Regional Forum if you want to try to help – because knowing my mind the sex scene would go off in a completely strange direction that “normal” people would have trouble identifying with. If it does, so be it, but with people’s feedback, at least I can get some stuff they do identify with in there, too.
I should be working. Back to work.
Incidentally, thinking about directions my mind might go that would be weird for some people has given me some excellent ideas. Man. And some ways to frame it so that even though it’s not “normal” it’ll seem normal (hopefully) by the time we reach it. Yay!