Sunday, November 4, 2007
Not Exactly a Walk in the Park
I love living near a groomed city park and a wilder state park. I take frequent walks and enjoy myself, playing with dogs in one, and watching deer in the other.
But some parts of writing are not exactly a walk in the park.
What's the hardest part for you? Is it coming up with an idea? Strong characterization? Dialogue? Staying in a consistent POV or resisting spilling backstory on every page?
Mine is the first draft. Accomplishing that is like giving a long, agonizing and emotional birth. And at the end? Well, for me, what I end up with is not much more than a fat outline. One that needs diapering, and feeding, and nurturing.
What comes next is filling in the scenes, shifting the plot where it needs to be shifted, and creating something that works and is exciting. Way easier said than done. But way easier--for me--than the first draft.
What's a suspense novel without pacing? That means I end up with a lot of Nobel-prize winning words on the cutting room floor. (You'll have to trust me on that one.) Even with just a fat outline, I can overdo what should be underdone. I live for the day when I can write pretty much straight through with very little leftover.
In the meantime, I think I'll go for a walk.
It's all better with friends.