Running on empty


I feel like I am running on empty and it is only day three of National Novel Writing Month.

Usually I am much more excited about writing in November and I attempt to get off to a fast start, just in case something happens and I don’t have time to write. Then again I have time to do what I want to do. It’s been a long day. Sunday’s usually are, but I try to make time for my writing, but today’s been different.

Some of it is because of my writing style. When I write I am a “seat of the pants” writer. Unlike many who plot in detail I plot in generalities and let the story develop from the situation. That style fits my laid back personality. I know where I want to start my story as well as where I want it to end up. I also have four or five significant scenes I hope to interweave into the story.

The good part of this method is how it allows for spontaneity and innovation. I may introduce a character or situation I’d not planned and it opens up a new area for my characters. Yesterday I added a serious complication to what should have been a simple event for my main character. Today I had my two characters discover the source of their mechanical problems was not accidental. Things may work out but I have added the element that the world of this story is not a safe world.

Although I may like how my story develops. My wife once asked what science fiction books I like reading I responded with I like the one I write, because I don’t always know where it’s going. The flip side to that is without a clearly defined plot I can at times (like today) get bogged down and run on empty. Sometimes the proverbial tires spin. Especially when I get tired. Then my story loses its crispness and woe be unto me if I get bored with what I’m writing.

Today was full of non-writing activities, including church, a pot-luck meal, meeting with a friend, a men’s group meeting, a half hour phone call with a friend from out of state. Writing became second place with a half hour in the afternoon and a couple hours tonight.

Still I am on pace to make 50k words with a total so far on my novel of 5,022 words.

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