April 15, 2009: Taxing My Brain

Invention has given out. I have nothing new in the pipeline. I’d fling “please work on this scene” down the Basement steps, but I don’t even have enough of a glimmer of an idea to do that. At this particular moment, I don’t even have the mental energy to begin considering what scene might give me that glimmer of an idea.

But all is not lost. This is one of those points when yesterday’s “I can’t deal with that now” becomes today’s “Oh, let me work on this. I think I know what to do.” I have a couple of scenes that need a little bit of setting information before the action I have starts. When I first drafted these scenes, I just launched into what I knew without worrying about what I didn’t have. I knew that at some point I’d get around to fixing things.

To give an example of what I mean, I have a scene that, as of now, opens with Ennevel in the middle of a discussion with one of the men attending and guarding Kerlis in the Old Palace. There’s nothing in the scene to show how she or her companion got there, or what they’ve done so far to accomplish their goal, which is to get Ennevel in to see Kerlis. I didn’t know any of that, except in the vaguest way, when I started writing the scene; all I knew was how things would go once she came face to face with Kerlis. Instead of stopping to dig out what I didn’t have (and really didn’t need just then), I wrote what I had, what mattered.

I think this is an example of getting out of my own way. I’m not a linear thinker, jumping from point to point and then backfilling the points I jumped past, so writing the middle of a scene first, then backing up to write the opening is something very much in line with the way I think.

And that means it shouldn’t matter that invention gives out from time to time. When it happens, as it inevitably will, I’ll have other things to take care of.

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