I used to hate this question. I would say “well it’s about growing up in a zoo. My parents were zookeepers and now I keep pets. How do I justify keeping pets when I grew up in a zoo?” [please note that this example was made up on the spot and is not actually what my Fucker is about]. “It’s about how my adult life has always taken me near zoos and how do I figure all that out?”
This is neither coherent nor compelling. For a while I had a great elevator speech, but I realized that the blurb was not really what my book was about. It was about what I wanted the book to be about, but it wasn’t really where I was going. Nuts.
I am now on official third draft (unoffical sixth draft). Now is the time to figure out the arc, the question, what the fuck my book is about. Otherwise I’ll never know what order to put all those words in.
This might be an ass-backward way to write. But I didn’t know where it was going, I just knew in the beginning that I had some really good stories that people said that I wrote about really well. And so I wrote to figure out what I thought, as I always do. It’s taken me 2 (5) drafts to be at a place where I can even begin to think about what is on the page.
How do you figure out what you are writing?