Saturday, 19 April 2014

Writerly Ramblings

I’ve been quite pleased with myself for managing to do a bit of writing, even if it’s only a teeny tiny bit each day since the 30th of March. I’m still working on Behind the Scenes and although not all of what I’m writing is good the fact that I’m actually putting pen to paper is a big achievement for me.

Right now I’m trying to take a NaNoWriMo approach to getting it written. For years I’ve been saying I want to rewrite the story and get it updated; when I started writing it not everyone had mobile phones, mobile internet access was virtually non-existent and lots of places were still on dial-up. I had two choices, to either set it definitely in a time in the past, or bring it a little more up to date. I’m kind of doing a bit of both. There wasn’t really any reason not to give the characters mobile phones or internet access, so I’m letting them have those creature comforts, especially since it’s helping to close up some plot holes.

I’m trying to just churn out as many words as possible. Or rather, I’m getting as much of the story onto paper as possible. I’m not giving myself a deadline and I’m not giving myself a set word count per day. If I write five pages I’m happy, if I write five lines I’m equally happy.

The sticky points come when I’m deviating from the original version because then I panic about coming up against things later on that I’ve changed and not knowing how to fix it. But I’m trying to take each page as it comes and trusting that one way or another things will work themselves out.

I’m also trying to challenge myself a wee bit. The original story began as a challenge to myself to write a car crash without describing what was happening. The whole thing was told almost entirely in third-person limited POV of the main character, Abby, occasionally switching to follow a minor character or two. Now I’m switching between four people’s third-person limited POVs and it’s kind of fun to work out which POV I should use for a particular section or pushing myself to go with something different.

The bit I’ve been working on this week has been the big reveal. Jack has been concealing something from Abby about the family and their relationship… it’s all a bit soap opera but I’m loathe to change it as it’s such a huge part of the plot. In the original I just followed Jack and Abby as they had the conversation and she left.

This time I did Jack revealing the truth to Anna first of all, from Anna’s point of view, before going to tell Abby. Then the next chapter is from Alex’s perspective when Abby arrives on his doorstep. Originally the whole arrival thing was told from Alex’s point of view but it was pretty much just a paragraph. This way it’s a challenge to get all the information across about how everyone’s feeling when you don’t actually see the two main players in the conversation through either of their eyes.

I might get to the end of this draft and decide that it doesn’t work at all, but right now it’s a fun thing to play around with while I’m working out exactly what I’m doing.

I’m also kind of psyching myself up to share a little snippet. It’ll be under the proviso that it’s still very much a draft of the story and I’m still working out all kinds of kinks, but I think it would be really cool to see what other people think of it.

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