Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Trying something different

Paula is doing something she’s never done before!
I’m a linear writer. I write the events as they happen in a story, A, B and then C etc. However, with my current ‘work in progress’, I’ve been tying myself in knots trying to work out the order of events. Even a month away from the story didn’t result in any great flashes of inspiration, despite thinking about it (every so often anyway!).
I’ve known for a long time how I wanted the later part of the story to work. The problem was that I didn’t know how I was going to get there (and still don’t!). So, last weekend, I sat down and summarised that later part. I won’t say it’s all resolved but at least it’s part way there. (And yes, Ana, I have actually been ‘advance plotting’!)
That was when I decided I was going to leave what I have already written and write the later chapters – something I’ve never done before. Another ‘novelty’ for me is leaving gaps, mainly those ‘linking’ time-lapse passages between the major events, or descriptions of places. I’m simply writing a note in italics – insert details of venue here etc.
Whether I’ll eventually be able to tie these later chapters up with the earlier part of the story remains to be seen. Already I have a feeling that I may need to rewrite or condense or speed up the early chapters (which I’ve already felt were too slow).
We shall see what happens now! Wish me luck!



  1. Best advice I've read lately? Write a lean draft and then go back and fill in during a next run-through. Repeat.
    I think noting a gap that will need to be filled in is great, Paula. Not all stories unfold smoothly. Giving yourself permission not to write from straight from start to finish give you another tool.

    1. I'm not finding it easy to turn off my inner editor, but I think this is one of those stories where I need to sort out the ending in order to work out the middle! One character has already given me a clue about something that has happened in the middle!

  2. Replies
    1. LOL, don't speak too soon - have only managed about 1,200 words so far!

  3. Good luck, Paula!

    This is how I write all the time. And then I have notes and highlights all over my desk and mss when it's time to go back and connect everything.

    You'll have to let me know how it goes!

    1. It's a first for me, Debra, but I think I need to sort out the ending so that, hopefully, I can then sort out the middle!

  4. Discovered another little non-edit-as-you-go trick tonight. If you can't think of the word you really want, either put a vague synonym and highlight it (to be corrected later) or even three dots and highlight!