Chapter 4 finally posted here!)
And because this same, book-killing struggle happens to a lot of other erotic authors when they think of a distracting new short story idea, I thought I'd reveal some strategies to get around it. First, let's define the problem.
Problem: The new story idea you just thought of will always be more interesting than the developed book idea you're currently working on.
This happens because, by definition, the new idea is new and shiny and unexplored. Just thinking about all the things that COULD happen- why, I could do this! And then this! And then this could happen!
By contrast, the well-trod, beaten down plot summary you've already worked out to great detail seems so boring. You already know what's going to happen, because you had to work out all the surprises and scribble them on note cards or a legal pad or something, to be ready to write them. For your half-finished book you've already done the fun part (brainstorming and following shiny new ideas through the woods) and now all that's left is the hard part. (Actually writing the damn thing. Word. By. Word.)
This is exactly what happened to me around June. Sex Powers University 3.5 was due, but I read this great thread on the Literotica idea boards where some girl wanted a story about a nice, innocent housewife that was 'accidentally' turned into a porn star. And I thought up a great plot idea based on what I read.
And then I thought up the first line.
And then the first page.
And then I was writing.
'The Accidental Porn Star' chapter 1 clocked in at 3400 words. That's not much of a distraction from what I should be writing, I told myself. I can stop anytime.
'APS' chapter 2 cruised in at 4700 words. APS 3 was 9300 (almost an SPU episode length by itself) and APS 4 was a whopping 15,300 words.
So besides the fact that each chapter increased in size, I've now spent 32,700 words on a 'side project' instead of writing what I promised the paying fans I would, which is SPU 3.5. 32,700 words is a whole book by itself!
And right now I'm thinking about scenes I could put into Accidental Porn Star chapter 5 while I should be writing SPU 3.5!
Sure, I can stop anytime, I told myself.
So how do you stay on target?This long weekend I finally cracked SPU 3.5 open again and put about 3-4 hours of work editing the first bits and actually writing. And now I'm back in that saddle, looking towards my September 30th release date.
So how do you pull your lizard brain away from the new shiny distraction and back to the story that looked so good when you first thought of it? Here are some tips.
#1. A deadline.Deadlines do work wonders. That's why I committed to the September 30th date.
#2. Go back to basics.We've got so much crap going on in Sex Powers University right now. (Spoilers for SPU year 3!)
Troy about to be cheerfully cucked by Amber. He's still got the femme boi transformation thing happening each weekend, and Cheyenne is still angry at him, and Melina still out there, and whatever's going on with his roommates. Jess is taking on professional sex fighters, and they're coming to get her, and she's still dealing with feeling like their should be more to life and then there's Amber's story with the succubi meditation and the cock totems and ruined O's and .....
All the plot threads I've built up in the previous SPU chapters sometimes feel like a mountain of obligations I now have to service, instead of awesome story points to play with. Writing a clean sheet femsub story and posting it on Literotica just seemed like the easier road.
So when you find yourself paralyzed and burdened by all the previous continuity you think you have to maintain to keep your big, involved plot going, just... go back to basics.
Sex Powers University started off as a fun, fast tease-and-denial story where Troy was humiliated by his sister and high school crush finding out about his extremely small penis, his foot fetish, and all the other fun humiliations girls can give to boys in the Powers Universe. So when I needed to motivate myself to write SPU 3.5, I went back to that.
I put SPH and T&D, right in the first chapter. Humiliation and blue balls for Troy, right from the beginning. Just simple, fun scenes between him and Amber, him and the cheerleaders, Jess and Gia. Nothing fancy, real bread and butter stuff.
If they moved the plot forward, that's good too. But the most important point was to move the author forward. To make me love writing in that universe again.
So now that story's rolling again, it's my main writing project (the Literotica fans will just have to wait) and I'm on track to hit that September deadline.
And if you find yourself stalled in the middle of a long-running piece of erotic fiction and itching to write all those new shiny ideas and abandon your fans instead, just do two things and you'll be back in:
#1. Set a deadline.
#2. Take your story back to basics.Hope that helps someone out there, and look out for SPU 3.5 at the end of September!
P. F. Dee