Have you ever had a brilliant idea and then not been able to figure out just how to get that idea out?
As a struggling writer, I have a lot of these situations; I come up with a brilliant idea and then I can’t seem to get it into a story. I have a concept, but no middle. I have a brilliant, mind-bending end, but I can’t seem to start the story the right way.
Thankfully, I have this good friend–my ‘editor’ and ‘muse’–who likes to ask me questions to get me going. Her questions are usually something like this:
“What does that character do?”
“So what’s the point of the story?”
“How does that happen? I mean, how CAN that happen?”
“Are there rules in this place?”
Yeah, I know. Tough questions. Seriously hard to answer sometimes. Occasionally, I’ll be able to answer an entire background check on my main character–or the villain, or the love interest–without knowing what the point of them being there is in the first place. I can tell this one character’s life story–always dramatic, with deaths and other such tragedies–but I can’t tell you what they’re going to do in chapter one, let alone at the end of the book, when X, Y, and Z is revealed about them or their friend.
It’s a hard reality, this writing world…
And I’m apparently in for the long haul. I haven’t written a story since my creative writing class last semester. A couple days ago, I woke up with a brilliant idea that sounds like a cross between Divergent [an amazing book] and The Hunger Games [another excellent read]. Trust me when I say it’s not even close to a story; just a concept, but I’m working on it. Thinking is half of the writing process…