The new strategy is working well so far. I did lots of brain work last week, just writing notes and thinking. I am finally nailing this down to the main plot. I realised I have been getting in my own way, worrying too much that Book Three won’t be as good as the first two. Well, that’s just silly. It’s definitely not going to be any good at all, so long as it’s in pieces.
This week’s motivation is, “It doesn’t have to be good, it just has to be done.”
Also, a good chat with one’s friend and mentor is never a bad thing.
I have spent the last few days researching how to approach writing a sequel or a trilogy. This book has been such a challenge I figured I’d better inject some new ways of thinking into my process. To be honest I’m not sure how helpful the research has been, although I did find it fascinating to read about the Negative Character Arc on KM Weiland’s site. Always learning…
Anyway, I wrote a little essay on power this morning, and that seems to have solidified a couple of ideas for me.
I have submitted a couple of stories this afternoon, amid a chat with The Girl over whether she should have a smoothie or a frappuccino.
“Is it a hot day in Quesnel?” I asked. She said it was. So I thought perhaps the smoothie would go well in hot weather. Her reply?
It should come as no surprise, then that she went with the frappuccino. No matter to me. I’m sitting in my office in the dark. Why she even asks me for advice I will never know.
Honestly, how can one not get lots of writing done with this inspiring view?
There’s nothing like sitting with other dedicated writers to help you keep your bum in the chair and keep going. Sharing our work in the evening is a great way to feel good about what we’ve accomplished, and having folks to talk to when you’re trying to work out a problem is invaluable!
I love being able to brainstorm together and share information. The Girl is writing a play, and I am writing a short story. We are each stuck on some details. How fun is it to talk our ideas through with each other, and ask pertinent questions? Well, it’s quite fun, actually. Who knew my daughter would become a writing partner?
Back in Victoria at The Girl’s place, after a FABulous trip to Galiano, Pender and Salt Spring Islands. If you have never been there, you should go. I had never been there, so I went! There are several more islands we could try to get to next time. And yes, there will be a next time!
My favourite accommodation was our Rustic Cottage on Galiano. Comfy for the two of us, and it had everything we could possibly need.
Our plan on this trip was to visit all the “eries” and we were completely successful: wineries, cideries, distillery (just one!), eateries, bakeries, galleries, even a cheesery and a papery. 🙂
Pender Island has Twin Islands cidery and Sea Star winery, both of which had delicious products, of which we purchase several. On Salt Spring we went to Shine distillery and absolutely loved his vodka, gin and both moonshine products. Apple Pie moonshine OMG!!! The Salt Spring Cheese Company provides an information self-guided tour, and mouth-watering chevre cheesecake in their coffee shop. Salt Spring Vineyard and Garry Oaks winery both had lovely products to choose from, and make decision-making a real challenge. To top things off we enjoyed some terrific beer at the Salt Spring Brewing Company.
Restaurants we would return to in a heartbeat: Jo’s Place on Pender and Rock Salt at Fulford Harbour (we went twice to each of these). Moby’s pub had great pie, and I had a G&T made from Shine gin and Fentiman’s tonic water. WOW! Burger 537 was pretty good after experiencing the Salt Spring Saturday Market. Talk about amazing… TONS of people at the market, and so many eye-catching art products and food stuff! Oh, and I bought two pairs of funky trousers at Wardrobe (a little shop in Fulford Harbour).
In between all those things we went on lots of hikes and did a lot of sitting at the seashore, me writing, Matt reading, and always checking out tidal pools and being fascinated by the tide coming in.
So it’s a play on the Calvin & Hobbes book, but whatever.
I submitted a novel to a publisher today, AND posted my first story on Bundlerabbit. SO many items crossed off my To Do list!
Thank goodness for events like the Creative Ink Festival, and Miscon. These two terrific events I attended in the last couple of weeks are both ways of re-energising. I love being on, and attending panels, and giving readings. Mostly, though, I love making new friends and reconnecting with Friends Already Made. I come home with the desire to get back at it, and renewed courage to hit Send.
Why is it so difficult to hit Send???
Well, it is, and there you go. But I did it anyway. I am pleased with how things are going, and those other items on the To Do list don’t seem as daunting.
I have been on a mission, for the last two weeks, to solve a problem in my story; one that had been brought to my attention by a particular industry professional with the power to Effect Change.
It is so exciting when I’ve been puzzling and puzzling over how to solve a problem in a story, and then something goes Ping! It is sometimes with the help of a friend who is willing to listen to me talk through the problem I’m trying to solve, and even tosses in the odd idea here and there. Today we were out walking (in the hail, I might add, so that may have had something to do with it) and it hit me. In fact, it was probably a hailstone that went Ping! off my hat, or my ear, or my nose–there were lots of those–but whatever it was, it clicked. I said goodbye to my friend, who offered me her umbrella for the rest of my walk home, but I didn’t take it, 1) because I’m not afraid of the rain, and 2) because I had made a decision not to bring my umbrella when I left in the first place so it was my own damn fault. But whatever.
The point is that something went Ping! and by the time I got home I had formulated a plan. By the time my wet jacket was hung up to dry and my hat was hooked over the closet door handle and I had gone upstairs to find not-wet things to wear, I had the whole thing mapped out. Seven different places in the story where I could rewrite or tweak things and the problem of the Sagging Middle would be solved.
And now I must shut this blog down and get back at it because I have only tackled two of the seven things, and these things don’t rewrite themselves.