Friday, April 30, 2010

The Big Blue Yonder

I know I posted a couple days ago about Simply Sara being done and over and all the happiness that such a thing has brought me. But now I've sent it to my editor, and I'm realizing that, hey.

I did it.

I had doubts. This was not an easy manuscript. It's a good book - I honestly think so - but it wasn't easy to write. Sara's voice is very different from Jayne's, which meant being very careful with my writing voice.

There are so many things I've learned through this process. Such as:

1.) If you don't know where your book is going, there's a good chance you won't get anywhere anytime timely.

2.) A seriously good chance.

3.) If you're non-linear and hate written synopses like me, 3x5 cards are your BEST FRIENDS. Write out plot points as they come to you, and organize them according to when occur in the plot. Adjust as necessary. Add and subtract as necessary. Stack them together (not unlike Jayne and her quilt squares, let's be honest), and you've got the most fluid, painless road map ever. Stuck? Check the cards. Find a springboard. Get unstuck.

4.) There's a term in screenwriting circles called "spit-balling." I'm pretty sure I've written about it here before, but here's a refresher - it's sitting around with at least one other person and throwing around ideas (like spit-balls, but more sanitary). Good stuff comes out this way. I had several scenes and major plot points that needed this kind of work to get through. Even if the ideas that are flying around are not the direction you're intending to go, just thinking about why they're not quite right will often take you to what is right.

5.) Ignoring your book for periods of time will not, in fact, cause ideas to flow better. It just won't. Sorry. I tried. It doesn't work.

Well, I need to pack for my computer-work-free weekend (I almost said fiction-free, but I never travel without three paperbacks). Hopefully I'll have pictures to post next week!

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