[Writing] Uncle Josh seeks structure
My writing has really slowed down, and I am finding my scatterbrain trying to work on several projects at once in the late hour at the end of my day when I finally manage to sit down to write, on the few days I manage to sit down and write. So I have decided to try a solid production schedule up, not by wordcount, but by scene management.
As I have several stories I want to write, and I kind of know how they go, but I am thinking this is my year of the novella, and the stories require heavy plotting. So the plan is to plot scenes.
The problem is defining a scene. I have an overdue library book about scenes and one of the ideas in the book is every scene has a focal point, that beat where the story moves, the point where the direction of the scene changes. This seems simple to say and harder to pull off. In practice, I don’t find a point where the scenes change. The focal point of the scenes I’m bashing out feel like they are falling at the end of the scene, which also feels like cliffhanger writing.
Maybe this is what it means to write a page turner.
My scenes tend to build to a point, hit the reader with some strong emotion, and then switch POVs.
Anyway, to pull this off I have spreadsheets for each story, and each scene on a row, with the pertinent information. Then, once I allow my self to write (and not write about writing) I can do a scene, and hopefully call it progress.
It also means that the full story needs to be plotted. That’s a trickier thing.
I’ve summarized the narrative arcs using the every-impressive 7-sentence story, but I have not mastered extending that to a fuller story, so each character ends up with four or five scenes, instead of four or five movements. Maybe I need a paradigm shift.
But the plan is to create a spacetime structure in which I can work on assignment, instead of trying to fake something every night.