Awful Ideas and Writing

It is a secret known by three people (and now I suppose my fans) that in the original draft of Ink and Foxglove, Kristin was evil. There was no Camden, Theo was still a looming background threat (at the time he was also constantly drunk), and Adam was a shell of the character he would become. In that draft of the book, Kristin was a scientist fae who hated his brother and conned Wren into loving him so that he could become the heir of his estate. Luka was a poet, Wren was a normal girl, and there was a lot of horses.

Thankfully, I woke up when the book was nearly completed and wrote the original coffee scene between Luka and Wren, which completely changed the book. Kristin was no longer a love interest but a caring friend and slightly irresponsible big brother, Adam was changed from a skeletal young man with no agency to something befitting his grandmother, and Camden was born– thirsty for power and in complete control of her situation.

The book was definitely so much better for that.

Now, I’m a firm believer in the concept that bad ideas can be saved, but for your entertainment today, I’m going to list some of my very worst book ideas.

These will never see the light of day (Or have been changed so much you won’t recognize them):

  1. He’s a crow, she’s a lady. He has always been a crow.
    Self-explanatory, it’s very hard to build intimacy between birds and people. In this story he was going to try to convince her to help him become a human for some reason, and she was going to go along with it. The plan was for him to be a crow until the very last five pages… You can see the problems there.
  2. He murdered her parents, she is helping him because he insists it was for a good reason. It was not, however, for a good reason. Also there’s a war or something.
    I’m pretty sure he was just bored. It was going to be this big, dramatic reveal. But then I sat here like, “why on earth would anyone care about this very obvious murderer.” Like there were so many signs that he didn’t care and just did it for funsies that I couldn’t excuse it.
    I could see some people writing off the murder thing as being hot though.
  3. Re-telling of Rumpelstiltskin, only he’s hot.
    This is actually a long running joke between my friends and I, and maybe someday I’ll put it under a penname. Basically he tells her he’s going to take her baby and haunt her for the rest of her days unless she guesses his name… so she purposefully guess absurdly stupid names every day. But then she comes up with the most absurdly stupid name, and it actually is his. Cue a tearful goodbye.
  4. The little mermaid, only he’s the mermaid and he’s not been given legs and he’s trying to make her fall in love with him while he’s still in the water but she knows better than to trust mermaids.
    Eventually she was going to get rowed out by the girls on her island and dunked in the sea miles away from home. Then he was going to try to bring her back to her homeland but also convince her to fall in love with him because he made a deal for a girl he hardly knew and who definitely didn’t love him to get a mermaid tail so she could like, swim home– So like if she didn’t fall in love with him she would stay a mermaid and he would die.
    Yeah no, don’t make life ending deals for people who don’t even like you.
  5. The BFG but romantic.
    Look me in the eyes.
    Know that this was a bad idea.
    There was so much to this story, so many details about the giants and why some village decided to sacrifice a young woman to them. Saying the BFG but romantic does not do justice to how freaking weird this was, or the fact that after she was saved by a prince she decided to go back.
    Let me repeat.
    She decided to go back.

Artwork is Daphne Fleeing from Apollo, 1500.

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