Monday, December 14, 2009

I've been writing every day. Sometimes not much more than a couple of sentences, but I'm writing. I've been bouncing between a couple of stories too, when what I need to do is pick one and buckle down to finish that story, but at least I'm writing. It feels good to write without the pressure of Nanowrimo. My "win" the first year aside, Nanowrimo and I do not have a history of getting along well.

So, my stories. One of the things I'm struggling with, other than not having the attention span or discipline to stick to one story, is knowing in which direction each story needs go. I have written some great scenes, but that's all they are, just scenes. I write one and then I write another and then maybe a third, but none of them are really connected. Right now my plan is to keep writing those scenes until the connection is clear. And if that doesn't happen, then I will split off what I have added to save for something else, and then I will try again.

It's not pretty, this slogging through the words. It's not pretty and it's not always easy, but it feels right.


Sheila said...

I have a friend who can put together fascinating characters and amazing settings, but who claims she cannot plot.

The advice I gave her was to figure out what her characters want most from life ... and then put obstacles in the way of their getting it. And that once you do that, sometimes you find that what your character thought they wanted wasn't really what they wanted at all. Voila: character growth!

Interestingly, a friend of mine recently posted that most women will tend to write character-driven stories, while most men will tend to write plot-driven stories. (He kind of resented the generalization, since his current WIP is very character-driven).

Personally, I think both are important, and I try not to let one overshadow the other.

So I'd suggest taking your scenes and looking at the characters in them. What do they want? What motivates them? How is that going to change between now and the end of the story?

Does that help?