Thursday, January 04, 2007

Pulling Teeth

That’s what it was like.  Even so I got a chapter done.  But these people are not cooperating with me.  They change what they’re doing from one paragraph to the next.  And they’re still talking and talking.

A plan has been made by one person, but I’ll believe he follows through when I see it on the page.

I have no idea why I’ve started talking about my characters like this.  Am I trying to get distance?  Do I want to relinquish responsibility?  What the hell is going on?  Has anyone else ever had this attitude toward characters.  I never have before.  Maybe it’s because I’m NOT in control.  I mean by that that the characters are getting away from me.  I hope that’s not the case. 

It’s true that if I’d outlined this probably wouldn’t be happening.  But then I wouldn’t care.  So I’d rather be in this quandry.  I have to admit some of it has to do with my memory. A lot does.  It’s a little scary.  I’m not sure how to solve this problem.  If anyone has a suggestion, a tip, or a trick other than outlining I’d like to hear it.

Tomorrow I’m going to a movie…exactly as I said I would.


Martha O'Connor said...

Can you make notecards after you write each scene to take note of who was there and what happened? You could then put them on a big bulletin board. It wouldn't be outlining because you would be doing it after, not in advance. And you could color-code the notecards for POV characters. This way, the next time you wrote from that person's POV, you could quickly see what they had just said or done. Well, that's my idea. How was the movie? We enjoyed THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS and CHARLOTTE'S WEB.

Chaser said...

I'm useless, I fear. Maybe the characters are acting this way because you haven't made enough choices about them to propel them forwards yet. It will come.

pattinase (abbott) said...

In a story I've been working on, the wife beater, who was slated for death, suddenly turned out to be the victim. Yikes. Now I need to go back and add sufficient information to support this turn. Why does this happen? Is it ever better to refuse to allow it?

pattinase (abbott) said...

Children of Men was good if depressing.

Sandra Scoppettone said...

Thank you so much. That's a very good idea even though it feels a little retro to me. I mean, using note cards as I did years before computers were available. Still, I think I'll try it.

Sandra Scoppettone said...

Why does it happen? I don't know. But it does. Better to not allow it? Only you can decide that on a case to case basis.