Monday, August 14, 2006

Lazy boy

I’ve not come anywhere in the Writers Inc competition, and wonder what of the two stories sent in can be salvaged for use elsewhere. Humbug. And, indeed, fizzy fish.

The problem with having lots of work on is how it eats up all the thinking time. Or, to use the technical term, “idling”. Or, to use the Dr’s phrase, “I thought you were going to do some work today.”

Today I made much use of an unpatented creative process for getting story outlines to work. The trick is, having researched diligently and got a pretty good idea where it’s all going, to then not get up too early and lie in bed thinking it through.

It’s amazing (to me, at least) what can come out of idling. This morning the trusty left hemisphere (have I got that right?) rustled up a whole new character, a nice thing about how to play the bloke alone in his escape pod, and the right place for a big revelation.

The next stage is to get all this down in the notebook. And then, after a lunch of cheesy crumpets, tea and Dr Who magazine, I settled down at the computer to type up the outlines entirely from memory.

Relying only on the grey matter means you only get the essentials of the story, and it’s a good way to see what really matters. Yes, that bit about the escape pod works nicely, but I entirely neglected it as the thing got typed up.

This uber-outline is saved and then saved-as, and I leech through the notebook putting back all I’d forgot. Have chipped 2,626 words off the 12,000 monolith, and it’s now just a matter of knocking down those pins.

And, having set the stories in stone, of finding ways to keep it interesting for myself as I write it. Which usually means changing it all as I go.


Rob Stradling said...

A man all alone in an escape pod would probably do very naughty things with his hands - unless he had a GameBoy, of course.
Yes, that's it, give him "Tetris".

You see? Easy!

0tralala said...

It would have to be "Space Tetris", but otherwise yes... yes... I would do it!