Friday, December 29, 2006

The White Light Dawns

I had that moment this morning - that moment that I'm always waiting for whenever I'm writing a rough draft. It's that exact time when my mystery plot is finally revealed to me, the writer, and all of a sudden the sky clear's and bright light shines down from the heavens. Unfortunately, historically, this only happens when I'm approaching the end of my rough draft. So I spend most of my rough draft writing time wandering around in a fog of red herrings and plotting based on who I think the bad guy is at the time.

Then that moment happens and changes everything. Suddenly, I have a plot that won't make people weep with agony. I have a plot that might even measure up to the first book. I have a plot that I would be happy to read - and I'm no easy reader to please. Happy days!

Now all I have to do is go back and thread the clues and add in scenes throughout the first 210 pages. That's all - no big deal, right?

So do you have those moments while writing? Are you a panster at all? Or do you have a notebook full of notes and a plastic container of index cards before you sit down to write? And if you work the last way, how much does your finished product vary from your original notes?

I'm only lacking the climax of the mystery then the culmination of the H/h relationship to wrap up this story in rough form. Then it's on to layering in description (something I tend to skimp on in the rough draft), adding the humor that everyone wants and layering in my new mystery plot.

What a great way to bring in the New Year!


Kimber An said...

I have those moments, but I'm usually too dense to notice them. I just go along fat, dumb, and happy, until one of my Crunchy Critters points them out to me. Then, I whip my head around and scream, "How'd that get there?!!!" But, it's all good. My critters say I do my best work when I don't know what the heck I'm doing.

I also keep a notebook, my "Dump Book." I designed and sewed a purse specifically to hold it. I take it with me everywhere, the story, the poopy diaper changing station, the laundry room. I jot things down and then flesh them out when I get the chance to get back on the computer.

Congrats on your breakthrough! I just started rereading 'Rumble.' With the week I've been having, I needed the comfort of a good book. ;)

Tori Lennox said...

I'm a lousy plotter. I do much better when I can just make things up as I go along. :) I do have to keep copious notes, though, to keep things straight. Every character, every location. Personal background stuff on recurring characters.

I have a spiral notebook in my purse for keeping track of things that pop into my head when I'm out and about.

Kimber An said...

Oh, I never outline first, if that's what you mean, Tori! For me, half the fun is seeing how it will all turn out. Orion was just talking about how she writes to fast, which is something I do too. This means I have to go back and fill in all the holes. Like Jana, I'm very skimpy on descriptions. I mean, sheesh, I already know what everything and everybody looks like! Why should I write it all down? You can get to Orion's blog through mine, if you don't know how to get there yet. She just landed her first book deal and is taking us through the process.

Jana DeLeon said...

hugs, kimber, on the bad week. Maybe the new year will start off better. Sometimes I have those moments of brilliance when I didn't know I actually had them. I get into the wip and then realize that I set something up perfectly in chapter 4 not even realizing I could use it in chapter 10. Those are great moments!

Tori - I keep saying I am going to at least make character cards as I write. I am forever going back to find out how old someone is or their eye color, etc. And for whatever anal reason, I can't seem to continue writing until I know. Now, while I'm making it all up, I will just put a (need name) or (need age) or anything of the sort and keep on writing.

Kimber An said...

Just got back from the library, so I can breathe again. And I've got 'Rumble' back in my purse.

Oh, dang, eye color...and that can get really wierd when have the characters are aliens! :O (scrambles for notecards)

Tammy said...

Oh, what a wonderful feeling when it "clicks" - it just doesn't happen enough for us! Good for you!

Sassy Sistah said...

OH! That's wonderful, Jana! A great way to start 2007!! Keep on keeping on, girl! Lots of us are rooting for you!

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