Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Getting ideas

I only managed 1500 words today – normally a below average day but that was the amount of words that brought my seventh story to a natural end! Now I have only three more stories to write until I finish the first draft of my novel.

I was speaking to my friend the Filmmaker yesterday. He's taking a break from writing scripts at the moment and he's found that he doesn't construct scenes in his head anymore, while he would get loads of ideas when went about his day when he was writing regularly.

I found this interesting, because hardly ever think about my novel outside of writing it. I'm not sure if it's because I'm not inspired, (scary thought – let’s put that aside) or because I try not to as it can get me worked up. Last night I found myself creating dialogue and imaging scenes, and I had to stop because there was no way that I'd get to sleep at a decent hour if I kept down that road.

When I do let myself think about the story I'm working on outside of writing hours, I tend to enjoy it, mainly because it all seems fantastically interesting, amusing and inspiring in my head. (My psyche is very modest.) However, when I sit down to write it I always end up moving in another direction, or it doesn't quite fit. Strange really.

It's actually easier to plan the story and dialogue while I'm actually writing, as when I need to I'll pause, look into space, hopefully get an idea, then continue. The flipside of this is slightly unpolished dialogue and weird twists, so I hope that my editing skills will prove to be up to the now mighty job. Dialogue needs to be either funny, quirky or clever, not as literal as I'm writing at the moment.

(By the way I think about my novel the most when I’m in the shower – I’d rather not examine that fact too closely though.)

7 comments:

Helen said...

I try to not think too much about my novel when I'm not writing it. I don't know if this is because the subject matter is quite dark and I'd rather think happier thoughts or if my head is so full of stuff I want to write after this there is no room. I have most of the novel planned out so maybe I don't feel the need. I do think of things every now and again when I allow myself...and I write them down to come back to in the editing process.

hellojed said...

Helen, I wish I could stick to my plans I've made, and sometimes I can, but sometimes what I've plotted doesn't feel right and I go off in another direction. I've always reached the ending that I originally wanted, but sometimes it's through a different way if you know what I mean.

Anna said...

I find that my mind has a will of its own. Sometimes thoughts from writing projects stay with me - lingering on the fringes of my mind - other times they float away for a time and germinate in the recesses of my mind until I'm ready to access them. Creativity is a funny thing with energy sources constantly in flux - at least in my humble world.

RamblingMan said...

i take a pencil and notepad with me and dont restrict myself to writing hours when an idea strikes ... jot it down ...
i find it very hard to sit down and say "right now i'm going to start writing" - its at those times i draw a blank ... when i have 100 things to do is when i get the good ideas ...

hellojed said...

Anna, you're right about ideas, I have little control over them!

Ramblingman, fair play - I have a little notebook and pencil for stray ideas, but so far my best ideas come from just putting some time aside and 'brainstorming' if I can use that term. It's not like I ignore any ideas that I have outside of writing if they are good, but they don't always work for me as well as the others, and I like to 'switch off' outside of writing time.

hellojed said...

Just to clarify - when I say that I pause while writing to get an idea, it can be just the environment the character is in, a description of the place, their tone of voice, things like this. I struggle with descriptions and I find it easier to imagine a scene while I'm writing rather than from nothing.

Gledwood said...

Hmmm I have experience of writing ... I just have other problems kind of getting in the way. You can read about these in my blog if you're interested.... 1500 to 2000 words in a day is about as much as the average person can muster in fairly good quality prose on an ongoing basis ... what are you writing about? And how long do you intend the book to be?
I'm fascinated.
Come by mine if you like ~ please leave a message if you do

All the best with your project.

from
Gledwood
"vol 2"...