Anyone who has ever asked me what is happening with a story to my face can tell you that despite having 37+ stories and protagonists running around in my head, I can tell you who is doing what and where most stories are going. However, every one of those stories has a handful of characters with their own little nuances, and keeping those specific character traits straight in my head can take a little prompting.
You see, when I get a story, I write it. I sit down and write chapter after chapter until I can’t. Just this past weekend, I sat down and wrote ten new chapters to a story that I hadn’t worked on in months. I stop writing a story for one of four reasons.
- A Block – okay, it isn’t so much a block, it is more of a bridge which someone forgot to put the inset in. I know what I want to happen next, or further on down the line, and it is writing the not so exciting joiner. I get stuck on this a lot, and is my number one cause to need to walk away from it.
- The ADHD Muse – I’m on track, writing well, then I have a vivid dream and when I wake up, my mind can’t let it go and I need to write it. The previous books get put to the side and the new project takes over until it hits problem 1.
- Too Much Happening – this is when my head is crammed with too many ideas and I can’t figure out how to express what I see like a movie in my head, in words. When this happen, I usually sit back to let the scene get cleaned up, then when I know I can write it, I dig in and get it done. Or, sometimes I have scenes from numerous books in my head all playing at the same time and it gives me a headache. Times like that, I catch up on my television shows.
- The Muse and I Disagree – this happens more than you think. She’ll write a scene I am not happy with, I.e. Something violent or sexual that I think it is too early for or I worry it will rub the readers the wrong way. At this point I throw my hands in the air and go read another book, or watch Grand Designs or something relatively harmless. I come back to the scene later (sometimes months) and decide whether I can bear it or not then.
Today, I’m suffering from 1, 3, and 4.
I’m going to get my nerd on with British accents, interesting house designs, and Kevin McCloud’s awesome sense of humour and sarcasm.