Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Stuffing It In My Head.

My brain isn’t exactly known for holding information. Writing a novel sure seems to need that skill, though.

It’s not that I just need to remember all the information, but I need to remember where all the information is. And I need to remember the character arcs, where they are in their arcing, where the plot is in its arcing, and whether the pacing is hitting the right points in the structure.

I’m not much of a re-writer, so when I hit a certain point, I have to start re-reading and re-reading and re-reading until it’s all up there well enough for me to move forward. I can’t do the outline thing and stuff.

To me, it all has to feel right and flow. I have to be in the words. I’ve always been the type of learner who has to know something so well, I don’t have to think about it. I can just feel it and do it.

Am I making any sense? I’m exhausted, LOL. I’ve re-read the first two-thirds of my manuscript four or five times today, and added a couple thousand words. And worked.

I spun my story all the way up, and now I have to let the rest spin out. Please, please, please, don’t let it fall out while I sleep.

So, tell me, please, how in the world do you hold it all in your head?

5 bonus scribbles:

Liz Wolfe 9/06/2007 01:16:00 AM  

Yeah, wouldn't it be great if we could actually hold onto all those thoughts? OK. I use menopause (mentalpause) as my excuse, so it's a bit of a relief that a younger writer has the same problem...LOL
I wish I had a fix for it...

Christa M. Miller 9/06/2007 08:50:00 AM  

My excuse is my children. Hormones, ladies, hormones! That's what it's all about. ;)

Here's a great article from author Holly Lisle on how to organize and revise:

I haven't tried it her way, but I do outline extensively, and I keep notes. Worth a shot anyway! Good luck!

Erica Orloff 9/06/2007 08:51:00 AM  

Hi Spy:
I hold it all in my head--but I have one of those wacky "remember everything" brains. But I STILL do what you do . . . re-read and get back into it. Because I can remember detail, but I can't necessarily duplicate mood.


StarvingWriteNow 9/06/2007 09:16:00 AM  

I don't keep it all in my head. Which is probably why I'm in trouble most of the time.

I've started taking notes, actually. Sometimes whole paragraphs, sometimes a statement I want a character to say, sometimes just one word. If I can get at least that down, the chances are way better I might actually remember something later...

spyscribbler 9/06/2007 04:51:00 PM  

Liz, awww! My bad memory started after an illness. At least, that's excuse I use. ;-)

Thanks, Christa! I swear, Holly Isle's site is one of my most favorite resources. Would you know it? It's the site I always forget exists! I don't know why!

Erica, I want your brain! So much! I agree about the mood. And the mood has to flow, too.

Me, too Starving. I've been thinking about taking notes. I try, but somehow, it's got to stick up in my head for me to keep the flow.