Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Pause/Stop: Time to Think

I’ve made it to Chapter 18 of my current work-in-progress, and I feel like I might actually accomplish my goal of finishing the first draft by the end of June. Now that I’m coming into the last third of the book, I’m excited to see how it’s going to end.

Yikes – did I just say that? I should already know how it will end, after all the outlining I did before I started. Except that since then, my characters have taken over the story in ways I didn’t expect. The specifics of the ending are changing. Yesterday, instead of writing, I did a lot of thinking about what’s going to come next. What I noticed:

1) Now that I know my characters better (and which minor characters have developed a stronger role), I have a better sense of what they’d do in a given situation.

2) I discovered some details that I need to weave in and/or bring out earlier in the story. Like in the part I’m writing now.

3) Some of the questions I had at the beginning of the story are starting to get answered, and some still need to be answered, but at least I know which ones.

4) Taking a mini thinking break gives me an energy boost.


  1. Well congrats, that sounds good. And enjoy this first draft. Let it be all playground and light. Editing is poking its head around the corner. And personally I find that is where the real work starts :)

  2. I think it's true that the deeper you get into your plot and your characters, the more you learn. And that's a good thing. :)

  3. Sounds like it's going well! Here's to finishing by June! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

  4. What you said is so true! I'm constantly finding new things out about my characters during the first draft. Sometimes it's surprising, but then some small detail, that at first you think is just a pretty little detail, will turn the plot into a cohesive whole. The end is where I start to really get excited too!

  5. I'm right there with you! Nearing 3/4 of the way through the first draft, planning to finish by June 30 but not sure I'll make it, don't know how it will end, am watching which minor characters come forth and which recede, and have a lot of interweaving to do in revision.

  6. Congrats on getting to the last part. Ha, welcome to my world. I'm a outliner and I'm in the same position as you (nearing the end) and my ending has change DRASTICALLY.

    You do know your characters better and most of the time, the ending you choose to write is ten times better than we you first envisioned.

    Good luck!

  7. Thanks for the good wishes!

    Tabitha, I'm looking forward to editing - it's something I enjoy (and I'll have 3 books to work on this summer, once I get this one finished).

    It is true that you learn so much more by the end of the book, Andrea. That's why I think it's so important to get that first draft finished before I go back to do much rewriting (even though it's hard to stop myself sometimes).

    I hope the ending will be ten times better, Karen, because in my outline it's a bit vague and a little too sugary sweet! Jennifer, I've already discovered a few details that have changed the way I think about my story - one of the joys of writing.

    Marcia, we'll have to cyber-celebrate when we're done!


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