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I hate it.
But I’m more alert and motivated under pressure.
I hate that too.
I found out I will be going out-of-town after all. I could have just said screw it and stopped writing my next scene. Instead, here it is after midnight. And I just finished it. And I will have to drive tomorrow. But that’s what caffeine is for, right?
Scene 23 (April 21st)
When I replanned my WIP, I planned to revise one of my scenes. As I read through my old scene, I realized I should have merged it with a second scene. So I adjusted my outline. While that may seem like a deviation, I have clear memories of what I wanted to do. Somehow I had written it down wrong.
After struggling all last week, I wanted to prove to myself I still cared, that I could still do this.
Scene 22 (April 20)
When I revised my scene list, I decided scene 22 would be perfect as a dramatic scene. I had decided to change my POV. I also discovered that how I ended scene 21 left me with continuity problems going into scene 22.
When I went back and looked at how I’d ended scene 21, I found I had created problems for myself. When I ended with a cliffhanger, I couldn’t just start where I’d planned my next scene. Simply starting where I wanted to start was too jarring.
Do I really like surprises?
When I found out I wasn’t going out-of-town this week, I assumed I would have found time for writing. Dreams of revising at least one scene each day collided with my life. And…who know I would be so tired?
So, instead of racing through Part Two, I slowed down. I only got through three scenes. I’m dismayed. At this rate, I won’t be done with my first revisions until…who knows when? Maybe never.
I’m so aware of writing that I’m almost paralyzed at times. I have thousands of words, few fitting my scene template. I find myself dithering. I know what’s happening. I’m stirring my stew until my intuition kicks in. And then I go write.
My new approach seems to have become pull up my old scene, pull out my notes, and copy over my chosen scene type template. Then I fiddle and fiddle and fiddle. And, finally, I write something. Only I know I’m not done. Next morning, I have different ideas of how to write my scene.
I didn’t go out-of-town this week…maybe next week. Mini vacation.
I took time to remember what I am trying to do with my revisions. First, I need to cut my word count down from 170,000 to 120,000. And, I need to get my story proportions right. I want Parts One and Four to each be 20% of my word count, while Parts 2 and 3 to each be 30%.
Because I’m experimenting with Blake Snyder’s Beats, the ones he wrote about in Save The Cat, along with some features suggested by Larry Brooks in Story Engineering. Part Two has two book ends, Plot Point One and the Mid Point. Sitting in the middle is something called Pinch Point One. Maybe I will write a post on how I’m trying to use these devices. Anyway, if Plot Point One happens at 24,000 words, and the Mid Point happens at 60,000 words, Pinch Point One comes at 41,000 words. When I get there, I will need to slip a targeted scene in, showing the villain’s nature. And it will need to naturally flow from what has come before. Continue reading
With completion of Scene Eighteen, I finished Part One. I’m too inexperienced to know if I did well or not. Only when I read it will I hope to have any idea how well I did.
Scene Eighteen (April 12th)
I wanted to recast Scene Eighteen as Suspense. As I read my First Draft’s version, I could see that I had tried to bend it toward suspense. But, however much I might reach for it, my material was wrong. I had not chosen an appropriate trigger for my scene.
Using Rosenfeld’s template, I went about reimagining my scene. I could not find the trigger. I pondered it all day Saturday, feeling pressure to finish my scene and my first part. I outlined my scene, hoping something would occur to me. But, when I went to bed, I didn’t have it. Continue reading
I’m nearing Part One’s ending, working my second to last scene. After yesterday’s realization I would have to revise again, anyway, I felt no particular pressure.
Scene Seventeen (April 10th)
I approached Scene Seventeen with a back-to-basics frame of mind. I decided to stay with Rosenfeld’s Dialog structure.
Before I could revise it, I had to fix my POV. And I did it in layers. In my first layer, I simply went in and changed my nouns and pronouns from one POV to another. As part of that, I removed all internalities associated with my former POV. My new POV had no internalities so I didn’t need to remove them.
Before I fixed my POV, I went through my notes and added key information where it hadn’t been before, adding bread crumbs from earlier scenes, and pointing on to future scenes. Continue reading
I have not been happy with the last four scenes I wrote. I selected Action, Contemplative and Dialog structures. How could I have gone through such a mood swing.
I slept on my unhappiness. This morning, I had some thoughts.
I’m not really sure how well I followed Rosenfeld’s templates. My two dialog scenes felt flat. I forgot my formula of declaring my POV’s intentions going into scenes. And I don’t feel as if I developed conflict very well. So…if they seemed to have no point…they didn’t.
And…if they didn’t have any point…they didn’t have any conflict. And if they didn’t have any conflict, why would anyone read them.
I also came to another realization. And I wanted to cry. After I revise my story, I won’t be ready to release my story to Beta Readers. Continue reading