I Also Write Musicals

I’m an artist through and through. I like arting. I art all the time.

While I am aspiring to be a professional author, and working towards improving my writing and storytelling skills with every word I put down on the page, there are plenty of other modes of art that I participate in: sewing, designing, painting, drawing, and songwriting, specifically writing musicals with my husband.

Writing musicals has it’s similarities with writing novels, but the differences increase the more I think about it.

Character creation and development is the most similar. Just like in a novel, the characters in a musical or play need to be well developed and complex. Otherwise, the audience will just see a bunch of bland characters and the take away from the show won’t be as much impact. After all, if you don’t care about the characters and can’t relate to them in some way, it stops at being entertaining, and for us, writing musicals always goes beyond the spectacle.

Outlining is always very similar, but slimmed greatly in comparison to novels. It requires the writer(s) to really hone in on the important scenes in the story, the ones that communicate what is happening the best, and never wasting any time. After all, most people aren’t looking to go to a six hour play. Most people.

Now, as for the differences:
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Planning Ahead…

Now that NaNoWriMo is over, I thought I would give you a quick post on what is happening next in my world of writing!

As far as THE BLESSED goes, I might have written nearly 70k this month for it, but there is still plenty of writing left to be had. I’m almost finished up with Act 2 (just the major, life-changing events to happen there) and then it’s onto Act 3 with the rise of conflict and the resolution!

Then, I’ll have two books in need of editing! Millie is getting through THE VARKEN with editing, and I am excited to dive back into that story and those characters and start really grinding into it to get it ready for publishing in April. My amazing cousin Amy has agreed to do the cover for the novel, and I’m excited to see what she comes up with (she painted the cover for THE KEEPER as well).

I’m excited to have so many new tools at my fingertips this time around with publishing. Along with Scrivener, to make the editing process easier, I’m also looking forward to investing in my formatting a little further. In THE KEEPER, the formatting was very bare-bones and simple, and I’m hoping to learn more about font choice, margins, that sort of thing, this time around. I even have a new website book-marked to aid me in my quest at http://www.diybookformats.com/ and http://www.diybookcovers.com/. Both have lots of great tutorials and ideas here, and a great one to keep on hand for when you reach this point of your process.

While all of this editing is happening, I’ll continue working on world building and character development for the Book Book by writing short stories. I’m so excited by the mundane things I’ve created for this world that I need to get it out of my system! When the Book Book starts, I don’t want to drag on with showing everyone’s daily routines. While that’s interesting, I’ll want to focus more on the plot and characters, and let the world build around you as you read.

Our musical Scarlet is almost through with its round of workshops and will be moving into a whole new planning phase soon. Although timing is still a secret, I’m excited to announce that it will be performed in the 2016-2017 season at our local theatre and I’ll be directing, which will be a huge learning curve for me but I’m looking forward to the stretching and growing.

And lastly, our second musical, Fractured, is well under way! I’ve been working on a blog post about writing musicals, but it keeps staying in that ‘drafting’ stage. As for now, we only have 2 more songs left to write (which will total around 20 songs) and a few scenes left to draft up in the book. It is still very much in the early stages of the writing, with lots of editing and smoothing out needed, but I’m looking forward to polishing it up!

So that’s what’s on the horizon in Erin’s writing world.

Now that NaNoWriMo is over, what’s on your writing schedule?

Scarlet: Another Side of Writing

On the flip side of writing fiction, my husband and I have also taken up writing musical together this past year! He has a worship songwriting degree, with a history in classical composition, and I, as you may know, write novels. So together, we seemed the perfect fit.

This morning, we had the first read-through for our first completed musical: Scarlet, The Outlaws of Nottingham. With 96 pages and 20 original songs, it took us a year to write, trying to figure out all the twists and turns of writing a musical that differ from writing regular music or a novel. Formatting was quite the ordeal.

But the read-through was quite the success with so much helpful feedback to make the musical better, as well as plenty of encouragement that it wasn’t a failure of show (people liked my jokes, yay!) We are excited to hopefully workshop the show in the coming months to work out more kinks in preparation so that it might be performed in the 2016 season.

Although I’ll still mainly focus on my novels here, I’ll also give you snippets and updates on this project as it progresses.

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