Breaking the Rules: It’s a Good Thing.
I’m thinking about what I am learning about writing. Pesky writing teachers, editors and publishers say one of the main rules in writing a novel is to have a plan: make a story board; list, then flesh out the characters. Later on it is OK to abandon the plan, but you have to have that plan to start with. However, when my Muse demanded more, more, more, now, now, now, and I didn’t have a plan, I went ahead and wrote without one. She was the first person who ever showed such enthusiasm about my writing, and that had me pumped! And here’s the magic: every time I wrote, the words came without effort. Characters wandered–and sometimes even jumped–into my story. The plot coalesced without an outline. I started writing things I did not know, which made me shout, “Wow! I want to know more!” I had to write the next chapter just to find out what was going to happen. It was like reading a book someone else wrote.
Not to mention the whole experiment about writing my future. Well, actually, let’s mention it. It’s what got me started writing in this fashion in the first place. So imagine my exhilaration when the scarves leapt out of my book into my life (cf. Post #12). I can see the headline now: What J.K. Winters, Author of The Potluck, Writes, Comes True. I like it!
Anyway, I know some of you came here to read the next segment of my book, so here it is starting where Renee was impatiently waiting for Monty to take her to the gathering:
It was seven o’clock but no Monty. Well, wasn’t he late last time? Seven-fifteen. Seven-twenty. And then she heard it—the distinctive sound of a motorcycle blasting up the driveway. She rushed out into the night clutching the Tupperware bowl that contained her salad.
“You are late again! And you didn’t mention where we are going or why. And that’s just for starters. Dreams aren’t personal message boards you know!” She noted there was a hysterical edge to her voice.
“Although some may come early, many will be late, so time really is inconsequential.” Monty was being maddeningly unperturbed by her remonstrance.
“It’s not polite to be late, you know,” she continued tartly. She was making a concerted effort to bring the frenzied tone down a notch or two.
“In the banquet room beneath Serena’s apartment. To meet others on The Path.”
“Whatever are you talking about?”
“I’m answering your question about where and why.”
“Well thank you very much. But what do you mean by ‘The Path’?” Curiosity made her forget her irritation as she wondered how in the world there could be anything beneath Serena’s tiny apartment, much less a banquet hall.
“The Path of Spiritual Adventure, of course, which is why I spoke to you through dreams and visions, the language of the soul.”
Next time you get to meet Joe Kerr. Excitement! as my Muse likes to say.