Tuesday, June 28, 2011


So in writing, what is your troublemaker?

It seems every writer has a spot in a manuscript they struggle with. The first pages? The sagging middle? The climatic ending? The wrap-up? Where do you struggle the most, and why?

Some writers have a hard time figuring out how to start the story. I know a ton of authors who write the first chapter and then completely redo it once they get halfway through the book, because by then, they know their characters better and know how the story really should start.

Other authors struggle with the sagging middle - keeping it interesting halfway through the book. For suspense writers, this can be easily solved by throwing in a red herring or a dead body. For romance writers, well, that could shake up the plot in a bad way ;) Still, adding more conflict, even emotional conflict, can really up the stakes halfway through.

I tend to struggle most toward the end - maybe the last 4-5 chapters. Not because I don't know whats going to happen, because I do (I"m a plotter, and I have a synopsis that is usually somewhat detailed) but because typically at this stage, the story is "done" in my head and I am itching to move on to my next project, that's new and exciting again and not "worn out" in my mind. This is where discipline and focus come in (and prayer!) to push me through the end and make the story wrap up in the way it's been building all along.

So where is your trouble spot? What element of a novel is your troublemaker? And how do you handle it?


Tonya said...

I have analysis paralysis. I want to do well so badly that I get scared & dont write anything.
I don't know what to do about it except try to push through. Sometimes it works but it always rears its ugly head. I'm trying to get going again right now

Preslaysa said...

I think my struggle is with finally surrendering to the fact that my mind needs a detailed outline before I start. I tried to write just from the major turning points in the story, hoping I'll figure out the details as I go along but I'm more analytical by nature so I can't just "wing it."

Roman numerals, here I come!!!