Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stuck, Ugly Plot Snags and my famous Procrastinating Techniques

Have you ever noticed how tasks you usually loathe doing, suddenly become rather appealing when there is something you really, REALLY don't want to do?
For example, I made a real dinner last night complete with homemade mashed potatoes (granted, the gravy still came from a jar, and the cranberry sauce came from a can, but still...). For that to happen I had to grocery shop. Hate grocery shopping. It's evil. This morning cleaning the tracks to the sliding door felt critically important, so I did a thorough job. Mt. Washmore is gone; washed and dried and even put way.
 
I watched a dreadful 80's 'B' action/thriller last night on a movie channel with not one recognizable actor.
Anything, ANYTHING to get out of dealing with my writing snag. I have never attempted a mystery/thriller before, as most of you know, nor did I intend to...the characters just took it there. Now I hit this place where the pacing slowed and a plot hole big enough to drive a semi through live, and to move it forward I have to solve the plot snag I hadnt seen coming. So, not finding a good solution without a major re-write, I have avoided it entirely.

I have been at the 35,000 word count spot for 2 full days, today would make a third.

Today, I am facing the challenge. I came up with a few semi-solutions. One, I have to, no avoiding it, do a small rip-out and re-write: the best friend that was killed has to be killed in a different way and in a different place. That will lose me @ 1-2,000 words, and then gain some back. Yes, a minor change, and I know not the Nano way. But I cant move ahead without it. So I will lose a little time and word count but be semi-able to move forward.
The bigger snag, the big plot hole, I'm still not sure how to fix yet, but CAN move forward to the 50,000 mark without it. For now. I think. I hope. I will just "cheat" and do a drop down, and fill in that spot later. I have a few other drop downs from previous sections to fill in after research. I couldnt really write the scenes w/out the research, so I just blurbed a paragraph about the basics so I wouldnt forget. I have to research lots of political and technical stuff like the Patriot Act and other such issues that will prove time consuming, but must be done to make the scene(s) and story believable.

So, I want to thank Valerie for the "permission" to cheat and allow myself this particular drop down. This drop down will have no blurb, 'cause i dont have me so much as a bitty clue how I'll fill 'er in right now. I need to move forward and this unsticks me. For now. Hopefully it wont really back me into a corner later. It might. Bridge...later.

Note to self: when attempting this type of story, a detailed outline and some prior research would be very helpful indeed. (granted, I didnt know I was writing this genre, or even that political legalese would come up.)
Like I always say (even in this book I'm writing): Fate is a fickle BITCH. So me and Fate are having a little tiff right now. She was winning. But now I'm off to pound out a few thousand pages and show her wazzup. She'll prolly kick my arse in the end anyway, but I will hit the 50,000 mark by Nov. 30th. It will have a beginning, a middle and an end, and be coherent. I will not just type "the the the..." for word count. I will not just do any crazy thing for word count. It has to be organic and true to this story. I really love these characters, and I know I have a few pearls and gems in this story; pieces that I am proud of. I also know I will be spending months in re-writes to fix this baby up.
I want my Nano winner t-shirt. Even though they dont ever have any cute scoop neck "girl' t-shirts.

Am I rambling? Avoiding? Procrastinating? Okay, yeah, bye. Lola out.

3 comments:

orchidsinbuttonholes said...

I also have several drop-downs and sections of "come back here later when you've done more research" in my NaNoWriMo novel. It's a relief, though, to hear I'm not alone. It's really difficult, I think, to know before hand all the research topics that a novel will need, and for this project, there just isn't time to stop and research and then come back. But I also appreciate that there isn't time - that I have to just keep going and not get distracted by new ideas while researching (as is usually the case).

Great post!

Maggie May said...

'fate is a fickle bitch' needs to be on my teeshirt.

best professional essay writing service said...

I am sure that would be easy for you to list down things you love and those you hate but that doesn’t make it a blog sire

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May your pen be mighty

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Lola Sharp
My name is Lola. (I'm not a showgirl) Yes, L-O-L-A Lola. It's the least of my worries. Let's move on, shall we? This blog is mostly about my misadventures on the journey to publication and beyond. My passion for lush prose, quirky characters, art, music, literature, performing arts and anything creative will be a major theme here. This journey of mine will not always be pretty. Much like rubbernecking a train wreck, I know sometimes you just can't help but look at the carnage that is often my life. So strap on your neck brace, helmet and 5-point harness and come along for the ride! Licentia poetica.
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