November 5th, 2006

View from study (sunny)

Writing progress

New words written yesterday: 649
Words written this month: 2408
Percentage complete: 12%
Daily average required to complete by (self-imposed) deadline: 666

Couldn't post progress yesterday due to LJ being down or only fleetingly and partially available.

No new words today. However...

There are times when reluctance to write is due to lack of motivation and there are times when it's down to the Unconscious Writer Brain being aware that the story is heading straight for a blank wall. After giving myself constant pep talks all day, I still hadn't buckled down and put fingers to keyboard.

Then brisingamen posted a link to a comment about the difference between handwriting and typing, which in turn led me to this.

I found this article absolutely fascinating, though not an easy read. I have to admit I haven't read it thoroughly yet, but just skimming it revealed that it does seem to apply to me. I think I'm towards the "Discoverer" end of the spectrum, "Planners" being the other extreme. I have tried to shift my working method to a more planned approach, and it worked well with Moving a Mountain, but for A Necessary Evil, I'm using a more exploratory approach.

Right, I thought. I think I have it sussed now. I know how to decide whether to write longhand or use a keyboard. If I have the next scene clear in my mind and planned on a scene planning sheet, I can go straight to keyboard -- assuming that I'm in a situation where a computer is available. But if I only vaguely know what's going to happen and it just won't crystallise into a plan, then I handwrite.

So I took my pad of paper and a fountain pen down into the kitchen to tackle the next scene, which I thought was the one in which Mark and Berenys click as a couple and then spend the night together.

And that scene that had refused to be written by keyboard suddenly, when confronted with pen and paper, finally yielded up the reason why. That story thread is just not going to work as I envisioned it. It just won't. Mark wouldn't sleep with one of his subordinates and also it would mean that Berenys would have to disown him in a way that is completely out of character at the end. Almost all the rest of the Light Cavalry stand with him; she certainly would. So therefore she isn't one of the Light Cavalry. Oh...

So, while cooking the lasagne for dinner, I let the thoughts drift and have now come up with a much better idea. The sex scene will also be in a much better place in the book.

Now I've cleared that road block, I might actually make some progress again tomorrow.