Friday, February 18, 2011
A Wench's GMC--OR Craft Beer Is My Muse
I've recently received a crash course in "GMC." For those of you who have day jobs and do writing as a fun hobby that's been recognized as "good enough for primetime" (a.k.a. publishing) like myself, when your editor starts throwing jargon at you like this it's more than a wee bit embarrassing to ask, um, yeah, so what does that stand for anyway?
Don't get me wrong--I love myself some good industry-specific jargon. I mean if the OGs in your FVs don't box to the final ABVs and IBUs and your CO2 lines get screwed up or your bright tanks catch a good dose of brett, then you might as well forget making your wholesale or retail numbers for the quarter because your distribution partners are gonna stop repping your brand and might even horse trade you for a bigger name or at least one that knows their simcoes from their amarilloes.
And don't even get me started on sellers who think they know more about CMAs and LTV ratios than I do--especially when the radon readings come in over 4.2 pcL and they're upside down on their second with a lender who won't agree to subordination.
Yeah, we all have words we can toss around that we know others DON'T know....so I didn't really mind asking My Dearest Editor over at Breathless Press WTF she was on about with this GMC stuff from some Dixon lady. Apparently this is a fairly new concept in writing--starting with "Goals, Motivations and Conflicts" of MCs (oops there I go again) mapped out with a beginning, middle and end before even putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard. In other words, you should know how the thing is going to end before you even start otherwise you will write yourself into endless black holes and dead ends and be unable to salvage yourself for publication.
All this to me runs the risk of feeling like a sentence diagraming assignment. If I wanted to graph out a story, I'd have gone to graduate school.
Myself, I start with a scene. A hot one, typically, that my MC finds herself in, usually against her better judgement but letting the physical needs take the lead over the logical brain and build an entire story around it. It's worked so far. I find my main character's goals, motivations and conflicts as I move through the why's and wherefores of the original scene--how she found herself here, in this place, with this particular man and whether or not it will lead to more, or to less; to love or to hate; to conflict or resolution. It makes me one of those "seat of the pants" writers (there's a jargon for this but I don't have time to find it) I know. But I've gotten to where I can spot something that I think is overthought, over planned, in fiction and tend to put it aside in favor of something that feels a bit more free flowing, as it were. But that's just me.
If you like index cards taped to your wall, or elaborate Excel spreadsheets for each character's back story, or whiteboards filled with names, events and arrows, you go on with your bad self. Me? I start with a person, a place and an event (usually one involving minimal clothing and a happy ending) and the story progresses from there--not easily always, mind you, but it always progresses. And so far, a few of you seem to think they are worth reading. Even if you didn't, I'd still think they were worth writing!
We are what we are. Mammals programmed to respond to our most basic needs--for nourishment, companionship and (yes) sexual release (this is a Darwinian reproduction principal thing that is not worth arguing about on a blog such as this, other than to agree that we all need to get OFF, on a semi regular basis, to knock the edge off or to relax or whatever you want to call it). If you think otherwise, you are leading an unfulfilled life, I am here to tell you now!
The Brewing Passion Series from Breathless Press continues today, Friday, 2/18/11 with Jockey Box--Erin's Story begins, as her marriage to the Alpha male is ending and her obsession with a young employee begins. Set in the world of craft brewing, Erin occupies a place where not many women tread--in the sometimes cutthroat world of microbreweries, beer distributors and bar ownership. It's a place that has cost her a marriage, but will open up many doors as she discovers herself as a highly successful business owner and fully realized, sexual female. Of course, she does seek her new soul mate--but the options are plentiful.
Once you get "Jeff's story" with Jockey Box, be sure and go back for "Trent's Story" (The Rookie) and enjoy the holiday trifle of "XXXMas Ale". Coming soon....The first interactive "You choose her fate" erotic romance from Breathless Press-"The Tap Room".
Drink Craft Beer!
FB: TheBeer Wench