Sunday, January 19, 2020

the trials and victories of series writing

So, I've been struggling with writing Starfire Angels: Forgotten Worlds for the last month. I've been writing scenes and scrapping them. Something has been off, partly me (unfocused and foggy) and partly because of that unconscious mind trying to say something is wrong with the plan. The infamous infection of writer's block has been a scourge on me, a blight that I haven't been able to lift.

And then, when I thought I had the story moving forward, albeit at a snail's pace, I realized what I was actually writing was the end of #7 and the beginning of #8. It just occurred to me today while walking on the treadmill and watching an episode of Stargate: Atlantis. Something in that episode of Dr. Weir having to fight nanites who have been trying to make her believe she never went to Atlantis clicked for me.

Disposition of Dreams is very similar in a way, and that's the only hint anyone is getting of the plot at this point, except for the blurb on the front of the cover that is online.

If you look closely, it says "Nya's survival will depend on choosing the right reality." It was an interesting story to write and very appropriate for the series progress. You'll see why this summer.

The problem has been following that up. I am so anxious to skip right to #8, Racing the Orast Belt (or something like that for the title), that I think a part of my mind was trying to skip ahead and write that when I know I should be writing the transition between the two books. What I want to write and what I know I should be writing have been conflicting, like trying to drive a car with one foot on the gas and one on the brake.

Now, while rewatching Stargate: Atlantis, I finally became aware of the conflict that was causing this horrendous case of writer's block. With that knowledge, I think I can go forward on FW7, because it occurred to me what I needed was something else entirely than what I expected. Nya suffered greatly in 6, and 7 needs to reflect that and move her forward in healing. And I was thinking while walking that I wanted to do more with Vel's character development. That with the plot in the Atlantis episode made me realize what the series needed in a way that finally satisfied the unconscious writing mind.

I've moved what I had started for FW7 to be the opening for FW8, so I'm back to a blank page for 7; in other words, starting over (again), but I know now what I need to do. Also, I didn't know how I was going to start 8, and what I was creating under the guise of 7 works brilliantly; the general scenes will remain to get the characters to the races, figuratively and literally. However, it will require some rewriting with whatever I fill in between. I had also written a scene that I felt was more of a closing/transition scene (which are usually characters outside the main cast) and will use that at the end of 7. This will set me back, but it will move the series forward in a better way. I just needed to get that out of my head so I could clear it away for what I really needed to do.

Whew! Writing can be a mess sometimes. I took on this challenge of such a series because I had a vision to write something grand in scale and scope. I knew it would be a challenge, but I thought I had it under control. My muse loves to torment me sometimes.

No comments:

Post a Comment