Wednesday, April 22, 2009

When Your Writing Takes on a Life of Its Own

I have a deep dark secret; well not so dark, actually. A few years ago I started writing a book. It was going pretty well, I had an outline and character studies for the main characters and about six chapters written when Gradual School got so intense and I set it aside.

Earlier this month I had decided that I want to focus on writing more this summer, now that I don't have such an intense program of study for my internship ahead, so I began to write the characters again. Only something interesting happened. The characters began to move in directions that was very interesting, but changed the story line dramatically. In fact an entire story arc just dissolved right in front of my eyes as I worked on a portion of the story this week.

Was I nuts I wondered? All the hard work I had put into the sections I had already written, and all the characters that would now be cut from the story were just decimated. What I had though was an even better, more believable story.

Then something even more amazing happened. When I told a friend of mine in my internship program about it she said that a similar experience to the one I was describing had in fact happened to her. She thought my new story line was really great, and I should definitely keep it.

In fact she even offered to help me out by being my reviewer, so that as I write the sections that deal with emotional issues that I have never personally experienced and she has lived through, she will help me to make sure that they ring true. I am so blessed that she is willing to do this for me because what I am writing about is deeply personal and emotional. I want it to resonate, but also I don't want it to hurt my friend to have to revisit a time in her life that was so emotionally draining and painful.

Now, as I go through what I have written and see what I can salvage, and begin to rebuild, and then write new content things will flow much more smoothly, because this new storyline is fresh and will be fun to write. My goal is to try to write a thousand words a day all summer and see if I can get a working draft by fall.

We shall see where these characters take me next, they have already proven that they are in charge of the story and I am simply the scribe.


1 comment:

Suzanne said...

Boy! You have me curious!