Fateful Forgetfulness and Writing Rebuild
As I had written in my last post, I finally finished my notes and background world building for Born of Water. I was ready to start rebuilding the novel. Right? I opened up the file a few times, played with formatting, considered the question “Do I start with a blank template, keep version 2 behind the new writing of version 3, or try to restructure what I’ve already written?” I didn’t actually type a single word.
Something still wasn’t clicking and I was happy for a trip to Ottawa. Maybe I could start there. Maybe it would clear my head. Adam and I had a blast, both falling completely in love with Canada just as we do every time we travel up there – and this was after politely getting ripped apart by Canadian Customs. Go figure. I didn’t find the time or inclination to write.
Getting organized back home, I had a moment of panic. The power cord to my laptop was missing. I’d left in at the B&B, Albert House Inn, in Ottawa. They found it and offered to send it to me for free (Did I mention I love Canada?). Let’s see, a power cord travels across international borders at a rate slower than a bird flies or sap runs in spring. Okay, about two weeks down without my laptop. It was one of the best fateful moments of inobservance I would never have done on purpose.
No, I didn’t go two weeks without writing. I went back to my notebook. This time I wrote a section in the first person POV of the character starting the day before they joined the story. The novel is in third person limited, so this gave me the chance to experience a normal day – the day before all their dreams and expectations are tossed into upheaval, directly from their perspective. Traits and elements clicked together, I not only understood each character better but I could appreciate how the events of the novel would affect them, who would rise to the challenge and who would fall.
Now I was ready to write! Of course, that took only a week . . . by the first weekend I was more than prepared to start. I considered writing by hand, but I’ve done that once before. The transcribing is killer. You should see my writing, ugh! Especially when ideas are flowing. So, I considered my options, borrowing from work or relatives, my old Sony that has no battery but can run Word (talk about a strain on the solar panel), bribing Adam for his Apple . . . . Well, I cobbled together a plan for computer access and finally opened the file ready to write.
Okay, back to that question: Do I start with a blank template, keep version 2 behind the new writing of version 3, or try to restructure what I’ve already written? I tried just dropping the old version down a page. I wanted to be able to refer to it. That lasted about one page. It was easier to have version 2 and version 3 open at the same time in separate files. A blank template was the answer.
And one other thing made the novel flow for me. This time around I’m putting each character voice in a different color. A simple technique to keep whose mind I am currently inhabiting straight, but also a simple way to be inspired. Ty is often angry – his POV is in a red font. You get the idea. 🙂
The story is flowing so quickly and so well this time. I’m about three chapters ahead of version 2 as the action unfolds at a faster pace, words explaining things are cut. I’ve learned to get internal thoughts across with expression rather than needing to write everything out.
Needless to say, I’m completely wrapped up in writing and having a hard time pulling myself back to earth. “What dinner? Oh yeah . . . food. Huh.” I have my power cord back (Thank you, thank you!!) and know I need to do more than just write my novel. If not update this blog, than I should consider editing those three short stories I’m sitting on and sending them around . . . and I really need to vacuum.
And oddly, Deliberate Actions is really itching under my skin. I really like that story and I’m seeing where it could be pushed. It is a story I like as it is, but boy could it be something compelling if I just . . . . Maybe when I’m done with the rewrite of BofW! I’m finding the 40 hour a week job a real hang up at the moment. Actually, it is the biggest frustration in my life as it saps my creativity, cuts into my most productive writing hours, and usually leaves me exhausted and pissy even when I try not to let it get to me. Not the proper mindset for writing, but I’m good at getting lost in my stories and regaining myself.
Is that the difference – I see the real me and real life as what exists outside of the office. The corporate version of myself is the fake and hopefully has an expiration date in the near future! But the need to continue to work where I do is necessary for at least the short term – another year? The frustration really stems from an inability to balance to two halves of my life. Writer/Life and Worker.
Oh well, no point on dwelling on it. I have two novels to rework!! 😀