In my writing room at home I keep a copy of a Peanuts strip on the wall for inspiration. Snoopy is sitting on top of his dog house typing a series of opening lines. You know the ones about a dark and stormy night, a gun shot ringing out, a hospital intern making a discovery and a little boy growing up in Kansas. At the end of the strip he realizes he’s written himself into a corner. It happens to all of us at one time or another: we start a new project with lots of vigor and excitement only to realize we haven’t hammered out all of the details and we’re stuck.
As writers, we spend a lot of our time staring at computer screens or blank sheets of paper ready to create our masterpiece. When that computer screen is taunting us because we can’t get our story going it’s frustrating. So we turn to the experts: blogs, books on writing and the members of our critique circle, if we’re lucky enough to have a critique circle.
We think and plan then rewrite and tweak until inspiration hits and we know exactly what to do. The thing that helps move our story along comes to us in something like a blaze then we’re on fire again, the words fly from our fingertips fueled by mercury.
But what if you’ve been stuck for a long time? What if you’re still trying to get your character to admit that she’s frightened to talk to the guy in the booth because he bears an uncanny resemblance to her long dead brother? What do you do? The sessions listed below may not spark exactly the motivation you need, but they may point you in the right direction.
My Project is Underway, What Next?
Friday 9:00 –
Seeing and Hearing is Creating: Character and Plot Development Using Point of View and Voice – David B. Coe
Saturday 10:30 –
(1) Writing Isn’t A Race: Pacing and Story Arc – David B. Coe
(2) Using Your Head to Touch Hearts: Crafting Gripping Scenes – Lisa Tucker
These courses, along with the rest of the weekend's offerings, will help get you moving and keep you motivated as you work through your own dark and stormy nights as great discoveries are being made in your writing.
I look forward to seeing you in October.