>> Wednesday, July 28, 2010
I'm going to date myself and ask who remembers the TV show (not the recent movie I haven't seen) called "The A-Team"? The leader would light his cigar and say, "I love it when a plan comes together." That's kind of how I feel.
See, I'm not a plot person. I'm a character person. Time and time again, I jump in with situations and characters I like and meander about until I stumble over a plot. Yeah, yeah, pathetic. There's a reason I don't write mysteries.
But, like all my good thinking, most of the writing and planning and putting things together is done by my subconscious, frequently without giving my conscious process much information at all. So, I'll be wandering about in my novel, putting in this detail and that detail for no discernible reason when, bam, I add one more quirky little unrelated detail and, suddenly, the whole plot comes together addressing all the big things I wanted to say, but also putting all the other pieces together so they'll actually work (and usually incorporating those details I'd stuck in earlier without having any reason for it).
It happened with my first novel, where my original situation drove me to add details for no apparent reason, like Layla's severe morning sickness and Tander's resistance to healing magic. Then, I threw in a few kittens to perversely adopt Tander as a familiars (when he was happy as a straightforward swordfighter) and suddenly I had an explanation for his magical resistance, had a method for him to find Layla when she was kidnapped later in the book, etc., etc. Everything fell into place.
Well, I'm writing a sequel to my second novel (my first sequel) and I had a few scenes here and there, wanted to include this and that and take the near invincible central characters in the first one out of the picture so some of the other characters (central to this book) could find their own strengths. But I've been going slowly, working this detail and that detail, but unsure how I was going to tie it all together and in what order, what pacing.
So, I've been reading completely unrelated books and, as usual, that left my subconscious to wrestle the problem until, just today, I figured out how to use a new detail that just, ping, ping, ping, put everything into place.
Now, I just have to write it.