Friday, October 11, 2013

The Process

It's been a few months since I completed my second story and started on my new project, Within These Walls. I remember going into it with the mindset that I'd do things differently this time around: plot out the story first chapter by chapter, to see if that would be better than winging most of it (besides basic yet concrete ideas about the plot, characters and setting).

I'm now halfway through this new project and while I still don't know if it would be better, it's definitely harder than I thought it would be, for one main reason.

My plotting process just doesn't work that way. I've found it impossible to sit in front of a blank page and come up with things on the spot. In fact, I get most of my ideas in the most unlikely and often inopportune times and places.

Friend: "...and I'm on the verge of losing my job and my neighbor ran over my cat...hey, are you even listening?"
And I think that's okay. Everyone has their own way of going about the process, because we all have different things that drive and hinder us. Some people prefer to work in the quiet, others need to be around crowds to get their brain going. Some people like to read a lot, others try to block it all out and focus on their work alone. Some people rely on articles containing writing tips, others find that it hurts them more than helps them.

The most important thing is to know what works for you and what you feel most comfortable with. If you think you write best sitting on a bench at a noisy street corner, wearing your lucky pinwheel hat while humming the theme song to MASH, then you go right ahead and churn out that bestseller.


  1. Haha, I´m the same as you. Most of my ideas come in the most random moments xD But anyways, either if you plan it or not, Within This Walls is amazing. So misterious *-*

    1. I'm glad you know the feeling! And thanks for checking out Within These Walls. :)

  2. Hey, the pinwheel incident only happened once. ONCE. And you promised you wouldn't tell anybody, either. Why does every person I know lie when they promise me that? It makes no sense.

    But seriously, what you're describing is like when you get married over and over (lol this is getting weird). When you leave the first guy because he gave you a bad gift (like a microwave, or... come to think of it, my dad gave my mom a scale for a present once), the next guy won't think presents are relevant to a healthy relationship. In reality, you're just exchanging one set of problems for another. When you dive headfirst without mapping anything out, you run at the risk of smashing your precious brains headfirst into a huge wall of writers' block, but if you plan an outline first, then you'd have what you're describing now. Sounds like you just sit there and wonder how you're ever going to write out what you planned. So... it's like a mini-writers' block at the beginning of every chapter.

    Which would you rather experience? One giant boulder in the road (or maybe more... I run into a lot of HUGE ones, but I think that's just me...), and then you get over it and it's smooth sailing, or driving on a really bumpy road for the duration of your writing adventure?

    Hey. That's a really good analogy. C'mon, gimme some credit here, that was the most I've ever thought about one thing since last week when I was picking out candy to add to my secret stash.

    -balooba :D (wait, how do I get my name to go at the top? ... lol I shouldn't be able to amuse myself as much as I do.)

    1. Haha, I knew it was you before I reached the bottom. Your posts are always...interesting. In a good way!

      I love the marriage analogy, very nice, I agree. :D But I don't mean that I dive in without planning, not at all! I plot out the story thoroughly enough that I know what the main events, the climax, the resolution will be. It's just the moment-to-moment things that are hard to plan ahead, because sometimes the story kind of unfolds on its own. Trying to write an outline of each chapter felt distancing, whereas when I start the actual chapter, I feel immersed and the ideas come together well.