Monday, December 16, 2013

The muddle in the middle

My recent book totally bedeviled me. I kept trying to tell one story. The characters were living another. I'm not the kind of author to let characters take over. I'm a dictator. LOL Or maybe my storyboard and I are dictators. But this hero and heroine had really odd pasts. And, you know, you can't walk into your future without taking your past into consideration. Only fools do that.


Come the middle of the book, my storyboard was obsolete. For me this is worst case scenario.

I made a new one and in two chapters it was obsolete too.

I ended up pantsing this book which took me an additional two weeks over what I normally need to write a book. It was so shocking to my system that I nearly panicked four times. But I didn't. :)

Though I have to admit, I needed new strategies to get this one written...and written well. Not just drafted and tossed at my editor for her to decipher! LOL

So...what did I learn?

That not everything can be tidily summed up in a storyboard.

I know...That sounds like blasphemy. But this story was unique. And if you stay at this business for any amount of time, you may find yourself with your own bedeviling book and need to write from the gut. Best to hear that now so you can be prepared and not think your book can't be written. :)

That some books are better coming from the heart <3 em="">

Frankly, I try to make sure my STORYBOARDS come from my heart. But there's nothing like an entire story that comes from the heart. I have no idea if this book is good or bad, but it is honest and sometimes our souls need that kind of breathing book. One where our heart and soul get to lead. :)

That slowing down, not panicking, giving yourself (or your brain) a little time to recoup might be necessary.

In other words, sometimes when you think you should push, push, might be better to take a day off. (Wincing here...not giving anybody permission to procrastinate...but reminding you that writing is a work of the heart and soul. Frequently, they don't have a schedule.) Talent, ideas, real story flow sometimes take thought. If you push to write, you may not write what needs to be written at that point in the story.

That if you're writing a book that takes place in a short amount of time, you might need to use a real calendar and keep track! LOL

Seriously. At a certain point I realized I had a 4-week book happening in two weeks. Not good. I got out a calendar and added some The following week...LOL and got myself on track again. Sometimes too much focus on the artsy part of writing causes you to forget you still have to keep track of things. LOL

And that's about it.

I hope this never happens again. LOL But if it does, I'll be ready too.

Happy Reading,

susan meier


Heather Gray said...

Susan, everything you said resonated so deeply with me. Thank you for this.

Susan said...

You're welcome, Heather. Not every book is easy! LOL But they're like kids. I like them even when they're bad. :)