Reconnecting with an old story

In 2009, I started my first adult paranormal romance, a story that would come to be called “Made of Shadows.” Over the years, I’ve written, revised, and rewritten that story several times. The last time I worked on it was 2013. And now I’ve picked it up again.

In the last year, I’ve grown in so many ways as a writer. My writing is so much stronger than it was even a few years ago, and I feel ready to tackle this story again.

I started a reread, and I’m reminded how much I loved these characters, how many tiny details I knew about this story. All of that is somewhere inside of me, waiting to be reawakened. I remember how close I felt to the shero, Zoe’s, grief over the loss of her parents. I remember how connected I was to the hero, Blake’s, sense of isolation in the fae realm. All of those character details, all of the world-building…It’s all coming back to me as I do this read-through.

This story has so much potential, and that’s what revision is all about. Bringing that potential to the surface, making a story stronger, making it sing. I plan to start a character voice journal to help me get even closer to these old characters. I’d like to start submitting this story to contests later this year, so I have my work cut out for me.

What about you? Have you ever reconnected with an old story? How did you reconnect? Any tips?

So, a quick ROW80 update:

  • Continuing with my read-through of “Made of Shadows.” I’m not as far along as I would like to be, but I’m taking a ton of notes along the way.
  • Continued reading “Plot and Structure” by James Scott Bell.
  • Checked in daily on social media, whether Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest.
  • Today’s blog post makes one of two for the week.

A Round of Words in 80 Days is the writing challenge that knows you have a life. Click here to see other participants’ updates.

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6 thoughts on “Reconnecting with an old story

  1. I’ve revisited projects, but usually in the train wreck “OMG, NO!” sort of way. It sounds like this story has deeper ties to you and those are always the best and leads to great things if you just stick with it.

    With my freelance and then buying a new laptop (and moving stuff over) I’ve fallen behind on my own read through. Hopefully things pick up for the both of us. 🙂

    • This is the first adult paranormal I ever wrote, and I was so in love with this story when I worked on it. I’m definitely seeing a lot of potential–the world is unique, the characters are well defined, there’s a ton of detail–but there are so many things about the plot and character development that need work. Things that don’t make any sense, character inconsistencies, etc. The potential is there. It’s just up to me to bring it out. But I do have my work cut out for me.

      Yes! Good luck with your read-through. 🙂

  2. I haven’t ever gotten that far, but it sounds like you have a genuine love for those characters and passion for the story. These are the things I want to shine through when I read a book. Good luck from a ROW80 blog hopping friend.

    • It’s amazing how many tiny details I know about these characters and their world. I’m glad to be telling their story and hope that shows in the finished product. Thanks for commenting, Michelle!

  3. It can be a lovely surprise to reconnect with an old story and find great nuggets in there – but it can also be a cringe fest when you see how bad it is (that has also happened to me). That said I think there’s always something salvageable from an old story, even if it’s just an idea or a bit of dialogue.

    • I’d already revised it several times, so a lot of the problems that were glaring in the earlier drafts weren’t in this draft, but there are still plenty of changes to make. I’ll be keeping more than I initially thought I would, but there’s plenty of work to be done. Thanks, Celine!

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