When the Words Flow

person writing on paper using yellow and black pen

As you know I’m working on the fourth book in the Paul Roberston Saga at the moment, provisionally titled An Everlasting Love. Things had been moving along quite nicely. I’d written about twenty-five thousand words and introduced a few ideas and characters that would be important to the story and then…

Then I hit a wall.

Which was annoying. I hit a wall and couldn’t write my way past it.

Even more annoying, it was something really, really stupid that I was banging up against. Want to know what it was?

Describing the inside of a nightclub.

Yep, that’s the stupid thing that I couldn’t write my way past. The interior of a nightclub.

Told you it was stupid.

Thing is, I had a very clear picture in my head of the room I was trying to describe, but I just couldn’t translate that image into words – everything I tried didn’t feel right, if you know what I mean.

But, I’m happy to report that I forced myself through it. Oddly, I did it in the gym, while my daughter was having her swimming lesson.

Don’t you love lightweight Chromebooks?

This means that the words are flowing again. Perhaps not as quickly as I’d like – I still, for example, haven’t finished the scene that stalled in that damn nightclub – but they are flowing.

Somewhat unusually for me, I’ve written a few scenes “out of sequence”. I’ve always been something of a linear writer in the past, but there are scenes playing out in my mind that are very much out of sequence that I need to get down. For example, there’s a scene I’ve played out in my head to do with a launch event – and I need to get that down before I lose it, probably one evening this week or at the weekend, but my “linear” manuscript isn’t anywhere close to the timeline of when this event will take place.

Hell, I’m not even certain where in the timeline this scene will take place yet.

I’ve written in the past about being a linear writer and more of a “putter inner” than a “taker outer”. Some writers are like me – they write the story from beginning to end – and some do it completely differently by writing the important scenes first and then fill in the gaps. Two totally different techniques, neither one more valid than the other.

The technique and the craft of writing have always fascinated me. Some writers are unbelievably prolific and turn out tons and tons of short stories in a short period, or a couple of novels a year. Others take a long time over a single piece, fussing over every nuance and word.

As I say, endlessly fascinating to me.

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