Now I think I understand what Hemingway meant when he said to never empty your well of writing. (“I had learned already to never empty my well of writing“) We all have our limits and stopping before hitting that limit is immensely gratifying because the longer you write the bigger is the chance that you’ll run into a problem. Basically you stop while staying ahead, stop while you are number one. Another way of putting it, is to stop writing while knowing what you should be writing the next day, you carry the momentum.
I took a break for a couple of days while I was in London and I haven’t posted in a while even though I have been writing. It’s strange how some activities you really cannot break the chain. One day’s rest and you’ll struggle to get back… But I digress. I’m back and glad to be posting again:
Writing is a struggle, but it’s the good kind of struggle, especially if you think that every word written – no matter how bad it may seem – is a step forward towards a finished story. That’s why I think it’s so important for us that do not plan to never look back or think ahead, and always be in the present. What you have written before and what you imagine the story to become are all distractions. To manage a story you must think what the character will do next, nothing more. When a solid plot has formed, then you can work out the details. You have a finished a roadmap and now you can even deviate from it, if necessary.
That is the most difficult part of writing, to let go of you expectations and just be, just let the story happen; finding the truth. Thinking ahead is the death of a organic story
The story seem to be more like a highschool drama rather than a horror story, right now. I think it’s time I turn up the dial a notch. There’s a lot of good set up here that I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to do with. The drama involves a girl, the only girl on an island full of military men. The main character is serving there on a base there and they take a shine to each other. But as the story progress, there’s something wrong about her, which is where the horror element creeps in. Everything before have just been to pile on the mystery and the eeriness. I don’t want the reader to lose the sense of dread, not completely, though I must have them at ease, otherwise what comes next is not a surprise.
The funny thing about drafts are that you are pretty much forced to omit a lot of things things. One of the characters, for instance, is still just called “the Big Guy” and some characters that appeared in the early chapters hasn’t returned yet, at least not with any active roles. I think it’s because, at this early stage, it’s more important to make sure the Main Character’s (MC) arch is competent. They say the MC doesn’t exist in a vacuum, but he does, for now. It would be too much to handle at once, otherwise. I can learn about the secondary characters afterwards and it doesn’t prevent me from changing the plot later on.
Even though I didn’t do a whole lot, today, (mainly correcting some things and adding a few more scenes) sometimes you just want to relax, you know. You’ve reached a point where you feel good about yourself, that’s rare enough, and it it’s even harder to keep that feeling. My writing had gone smoothly, today, and I think I’ve figured things out, but I know that if I push further, I’ll hit a roadblock eventually. Knowing this, I dreaded to continue. I wanted the feeling of accomplishment to linger for a bit more before I dive head first into the mountain of problems that is writing a novel.
Chapter 8 and 9, re-arranged
Stephen King says that there are three things that makes a story; Narration, Description, and Dialogue. Narration is the bare bones of a story that takes you from point A to point B; description and dialogue makes the story come alive. It makes sense to me, but it is only now that I fully understand the implication of this. Before the story comes alive for the reader, it must come alive in the writer’s mind. Let’s say you’ve written a paragraph you are proud of and then the plot takes another turn, making the paragraph incorrect, or at worst, completely wrong. You have not only wasted all that valuable time but it makes it hard for you to discard that passage and you might even try to force it in just because you put so much effort into it.
I’m a bit torn if adding description and dialogue in a draft is a necessary part of my process… I would like it to not be so. I would be very happy if I could make writing as painless as possible. But we don’t choose our muse and some of us simply has a bigger crosses to bare… You can keep track of my progress on Tablo: HERE
The quality is dropping significantly now because I’m trying to figure out who does what and when. That’s why I’m hastily skipping parts so that I don’t have to rewrite them in case I change my mind later. My rule of thumb in these situations is that if I have doubt, something is wrong. Then it’s best to simply rewrite the chapter, and more often than not, the characters take strange turns which I could not have imagined. Sometimes even new characters pop up out of nowhere, which is always exciting ❤ You can keep track of my progress HERE