Friday, November 13, 2009

Chapter Five Half Done

Yesterday I wrote the first half of chapter five, wherein Mr. Cocke visits the Widow Abigail. Today I hope to write the second half of this chapter, wherein Mr. Bull visits Mr. Clockshott. I am attempting to do something clever in this chapter. We'll see how it turns out. Actually, as I was writing this post, I had a fabulous idea about what happens next. So that's cool. Word count at this point? Maybe 13k. I haven't been so good about typing up my daily scribbles into the Master Document(tm). Hopefully I'll get to that tonight. Anyway, things progress nicely.

I remain pleased that I have an outline. It's a pretty skimpy sort of thing, just one page listing all the chapter titles with a phrase or two at each chapter telling me what I think should happen. I also have been writing out a paragraph description for each upcoming chapter so I have the opportunity to think about what the point of each chapter is so I don't get lost in the writing. That comes in handy, especially in situations like last night when I was working on a scene and one of the characters showed no interest in going where I wanted them to go, plotwise. I had to convince them, which made things interesting.

7 comments:

  1. I just love it when a character develops a mind of their own. Yes, sometimes they throw a wrench in the works, but sometimes they do amazing things!

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  2. Mostly, this character was making life difficult for me. But then she did the most amazing thing, which may or may not stay in the book. I haven't decided.

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  3. Sounds like things are going along well then, Scott. When the characters need coaxing or intimidation or even you giving in to them, you know it's working. :)

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  4. I like what you say about having to convince your characters. I think that's something I'm just getting the hang of. I used to twist their arm a little too forcefully.

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  5. Davin: Michelle is right about how things are actually working when you have to negotiate with your characters. I used to think literary characters were like chess pieces to shove around, and now I realize that they are in fact whole people who have their own ideas. For my book, I had an idea about what Abigail would do in this chapter, and it turns out that she's not the person who'd take that planned action. So she did something else, which is surprising and more dramatic and better than what I had planned. Which is really weird and sounds suspect, even if you ask me. At some level, since all of this is happening purely in my own imagination, I must be controlling all of this activity. Right?

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  6. Scott, that's a good question I've often asked myself. I have no idea. It's GOT to be my subconscious somewhere somehow...

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  7. I think when your characters start having a life of their own is when A) you find you really are crazy or B) you have stumbled upon a parallel universe or C) you have become a writing god and are channeling the Masters.

    When I do this, I know that A) I'm writing naked B) I'm writing as honestly as I can C) I am an absolute genius.

    Congratulations!

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