Yesterday was interesting in that, as I have said before, I don’t think I suffer from, or enjoy for those who don’t wish to write, writer’s block as such. I never need to force myself to sit down and write ‘come what may’. I genuinely look forward to and feel privileged to have the opportunity to pour feeling out of my jug-head but sometimes it’s easier than others to get into flow, meaning that elements of writer’s block do plague me.
I have reached a specific point in my latest book that I had planned at outset, which is a little unusual because I mostly have a rough template for a chapter or entire book, then ‘panster’ when I get there, the characters deciding where to take me as we go along.
The chapter yesterday was one I approached with relish, but it turned out to be harder than imagined, in that I could not get into flow and the characters did not seem to want to co operate – they had actually decided to object to the author pre-empting what they wanted to do. We persevered however and I read through the 3000 words or so later in the day, expecting it to be very poor, staccato even, the characters striking in protest, and prepared to delete and start again- always a crushing moment.
However, it did stack up and, with a little tweaking, I am more pleased with the chapter than if it had followed the course I had decided on. I’m so grateful that my characters decided to get hold of this and make it work, despite the restrictions I was imposing. The annoying thing is that I couldn’t pinpoint why it was such a challenge. It’s lunchtime now and I walk the fields in a few minutes, in bright September sunshine.
This morning’s chapter is gathering pace, encouraged by yesterday’s experience. Be equally encouraged that, if your characters and settings are strong and the settings emotive, stories and plotlines will develop despite our shortcomings as writers. I think yesterday serves me right for over plotting. Today I have ‘lost the plot’ if you see what I mean.