"Welcome to Japan, folks. The local time is . . . tomorrow."
- from 30 Minutes Over Tokyo, The Simpsons, Season 10

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Talking About Plot

This is mostly cross-posted from The Otherworld message board. I started this post over a day ago, and now that I'm finally returning to it, I don't remember exactly what I was going to say. Ah, such is life and getting distracted by fun things (like visiting Japanese temples) and work things (like needing to write English tests).

I almost always talk to my husband about what I'm writing. Whether I'm at the beginning stages of planning something and need some example plot placement holders to give me an idea of how to get to the next major plot point. Or if I just need to rethink the direction the story's going in. I'll also usually talk to him a lot while I'm actually writing the story. Like if I've worked my way into a corner and can't find a way out of it, I'll try to explain what's going on with the plot and if any relevant things have changed since I last talked to him. Sometimes he helps me figure out what's going to happen next. But most of the time, just talking to him puts what I'm working on in a different perspective, and that's usually enough to get my own brain to start thinking again.

Though sometimes I won't talk to my husband about something I'm working on. At least not write away. Like on Friday, I wrote a scenes where I had intended two characters to work together, only they were fighting themselves when they were supposed to be fighting someone else. I didn't tell my husband about this right away because 1. I'm not sure if I'm going to keep this interaction in the next draft or not and 2. I wasn't sure what my husband would think of it. So usually for things like that (things that I'm not so sure about), I usually wait until my husband's reading the story for him to find out what I wrote. As it was, I don't to a problem in my writing on Saturday and ended up explaining that "change" to my story so I could get him to help me with my latest problem.

Anyway, on Friday, I broke 100,000 words. And on Saturday, I finished Chapter 30. Which means I only have Chapter 31 and the Epilogue left to write. So I'm pretty excited about that, and I hope to finish this draft before my birthday on Sunday (June 29). Of course I probably won't make the 120,000 words, but that's okay. Right now, I just want to have it finished. Finally. So I can start the revisions.

The Otherworld discussion also brought up these two questions, which I'm more or less paraphrasing.

1. What are the benefits of discussing your plot?

I guess I like discussing my plots because a. it lets me know that at least one other person (usually more) thinks my idea is as interesting as I do and b. my husband is pretty good at reigning in some of my more far-fetched ideas. Especially the ones that really have nothing to do with the story and entertaining the ideas is only a way to procrastinate from the actual writing.

2. Does discussing your plot improve your writing?

I don't know if it necessarily improves my writing, but helps improve my logic and reasoning, and it definitely helps strengthen the ideas behind the plot.

No comments: