The other day (okay more like for days) I was having some major “issues” with my current wip. I had an idea of where I wanted to go but the plot was causing me problems. It was frustrating because unlike some writers who are blessed with the ability to just sit down and write, I need some kind of outline. It doesn’t have to be very detailed but it does have to give me a plot point breakdown so I know where I’m going. I didn’t have that for this particular wip and every time I sat down to write I’d eventually hit a roadblock. It was not good.
So in total hair-pulling frustration, while I was sitting fretting about making my word quota for the week, I suddenly had an idea. I decided to list the problems I was having with the plot. In point form, some phrases, some questions, I listed all of the “issues” that were preventing me from moving forward. It looked something like this: But if he does that, what about this…and this character doesn’t have a purpose but needs to, and why did you mention that if you’re not going to use it?
It was a start and it felt awesome to purge. Once I got the problems down I started to brainstorm using a kind of stream of consciousness approach – you know, just rambling on with whatever came to mind as I worked through the problem. Well, in a matter of minutes I had a series of plot points worked out from the roadblock all the way to the end! It was marvelous!
In the past, when I’ve had a problem with a ms, I sleep on it and let my unconscious mind work it out…this time that wasn’t happening –I think the issues were too complicated to sort through in my sleep. This technique worked really well and I’ll definitely use it again. Keep in mind, I’ve only used it once and had success, who knows what may happen next time. Either way, I got through the blockage and have been pounding out the words ever since!
I've got another e-copy of Going the Distance to give away! All you have to do is comment here (and leave a way for me to contact you) and you'll be entered to win! I'll randomly draw a winner next week.