Sunday, June 10, 2018

The Single Most Helpful Thing I Do When Stuck

Tuesday sees the release of PRISONER OF THE CROWN! There will be print (POD) versions available, too, but they won't appear on the retail sites until release day, Tuesday, June 12, 2018.

Our topic at the SFF Seven this week is: What's the single most helpful thing you do to keep from being stuck in a story? Or how not to paint yourself into a corner.

I don't think I've ever painted myself into a corner in a story. The closest I've come is when I'm writing books in the same world and with overlapping characters and timelines - occasionally I've had to do some major problem-solving to get events to match up correctly.

Otherwise... any time I've felt like I'm hitting a wall, that indicates to me that I'm coming up on a story breakthrough. The bigger the breakthrough, the more resistance I'll feel. I slow down. Getting words down can feel like pulling teeth. Sometimes I get very little done for a day or two. (Or more - that's the WORST.)

You know what I do then?

I keep writing.

That's the thing that works for me. And it works every time.

I'm a write-for-discovery writer, so if I just keep writing, I'll find my way through. I can't preplot to save my life. Ask me to outline on my own and I just sit there with a blank brain. Sometimes I can talk stuff through with other people. My agent, Sarah Younger, is actually pretty amazing at this.

(By the way, Sarah has started a podcast: So You Wanna Write a Romance and it's chock full of useful information. Check it out!)

But if I keep writing, the story will eventually reveal itself. Like a gift from the universe.