I just finished writing the first draft of my 3rd WIP Eyes in the Ashes. I still need to type up the pages from my last few writing sessions, but in essence, the first draft is done. The story took a different direction and my main character turned out to have less of a role than I planned, while my minor character stepped up to the front. For a while there I was stumped. Things just weren't flowing and I felt like I was pulling teeth, plus wasn't sure where the story was going. That's what happens when I try to control the process, instead of letting it flow naturally. The ending turned out different as well. I thought I needed a couple more chapters to wrap things up but it just kind of flowed and came to a natural end. It was a "wow, yeah, that makes sense, that's the end." moment. Glad I recognized it. However, it does leaves me with a opening for a possible sequel. Hmmm! We'll see what happens with the edits but I am going to let it rest for a bit.
I picked up a great book the other day at Borders - Booklife by Jeff Vandermeer.
In it he talks about your public booklife and your private booklife. While reading the private booklife portion, several things struck me, but the biggest thought - Just Write! Instead of worrying about word counts or how long to write, watching the clock and worrying about what I wanted to do next, just sit down and write. Relax and write. It worked. Yeah!
Sarah from Confessions of the Unpublished asked this week in Wannabe Writers:
Does your writing ever surprise you? I realized something about one of my characters that shocked even me. I never knew or intended this certain character to end up like they are. It's almost as if they've developed a mind of their own. Has anyone else ever had this happen?
Yes, my writing does surprise me. You get those aha, where did that come from moments, what moments and you think - "I thought of that, I wrote that?" It's amazing what happens when I open my mind and let the words flow. And yes I do think characters develop minds of their own and rebel or push you to tell their story, their way. It may not be the story you originally set out to tell. I used to think writers were a bit odd when I heard them talk about their characters taking over the story. Now I understand.
Where do I go from here? There are several ideas ruminating around in my brain, too many to form a coherent outline at the moment. Plus I have two other WIP's that need to be edited. Both stories are calling me, characters who have been waiting patiently, yelling equally loud. Time for me to start reading a few more books on editing and figure out the best plan.