NaNoWriMo is over. I barely broke 30,000 words, so I didn’t win a web badge or a downloadable certificate, but progress was made on a dusty manuscript, too long neglected because its author is too easily distracted. With life tugging on my attention, I need to remember why I write. I need to remember to write.
Ever have those days when you forget to eat? Or go for hours before remembering that, oh, yeah, the reason you originally left the office was because you had to use the restroom?
Lately, that’s me and writing.
After about a year or so of acute manuscript neglect, I’ve lost my way with the plot, characters, dialogue, you name it. This past month, I floundered in a mire of old notes, some so oblique I no longer know what I intended.
It’s not that I haven’t been writing. I’ve been cranking out all sorts of small projects, just not working on any of the unfinished novels. The only complete manuscript has been sent out, and is most likely lying in a publisher’s slush pile, awaiting perusal by a reader who will decide whether or not it advances to the editor’s desk.
Despite uncertainty how to proceed, I haven’t grown bored with the novels. If the author’s uninterested, how much more the readers! No, it’s time to become reacquainted with the stories. If I can’t recall my original intentions for their progress, well, then, who says I can’t imagine something new?
When I asked a plot question of a fellow author whose romantic suspense novel I recently edited, she replied, “The story has to happen that way so (a later dramatic event) can happen.”
She refused to plug a plot hole by approaching her story from a new angle. I’ve been there a time or two: This must happen because that must happen.
Well, since I’m in charge, I can change my mind. I can adjust the plan, redirect the characters, change the venue of an action scene, put one character’s dialogue into a different character’s mouth. It’s all in my hands. I am the master of the universe! Bwah-ha-ha-ha!
So. That’s all sorted.
Now, where was I?