What do you do when you are writing fiction and your plot gets stuck like quicksand?
Do you back it up and take another trail? Do you set the project aside and move on to something else? Do you lock yourself into a sterile room until you come up with the answer. I call this plot block--it's different than writer's block in that you can write just fine, you just can't figure out how your character gets onto the plane or where the cop should find the clue. Any interesting experiences to share?
Write down ten thing son ten cards that are related to the direct situation. fold them up till their tiny, throw them in a small bottle shake, pull out one and look at what you have. Write from that no matter how outlandish.
Second option have someone else or several someones write plot points on pieces of paper, fold them up tiny, put in small bottle, shake them up, pull out one and see what you get.
No matter how far out, how outlandish just write from that. It might seem stupid and if it's wrong you'll know within the first page possibly the first paragraph. But whatever it is in your mind blocking the flow may come unstuck when challenged by the outlandish.
That's a very unique idea. I'm sure that by writing something--even if it isn't the right plot choice--will move the story along and get the writing juices flowing.
That is the hope. Sometimes writing the wrong thing is better than writing nothing. Not everyone agrees with this. But I've been known to cut 52 pages from a book back to where I felt the story diverge which allows me to finish the work.
Any Stage Block:
One thing that I do is let it go for a while, read, whatch a good movie, go sight seeing, relax... and then go back to work.
That works for me every time.
really good advice there. I have something similar in my own blog about writing. Great idea Milady Gonzalez
I have checked your blog, I like your ideas, especially that we writers turn everything into production. That is how we let out. Overall, writing is a great therapy that helps the writer and who in the same circumstances reads the piece.
You wait for inspiration.
Wait a while and then start again.
My methods are the following:
1) I ask myself what could be the worst possible thing to happen in the story right now (someone dies, something goes missing, a character betrays another etc.)
2) When I decide what the worst case scenario is, I write it out.
Our plots should be as changeable as our characters are. Just because you have a good plot, doesn't mean that should be the be-all and end-all and it must never be subject to amendments. On the contrary, some of the best plot turns for me have been those when I just do something impulsive. It makes things more interesting and will probably be as unexpected for the reader as it was for yourself (unless predictability is what you're aiming for).
I rewrite the entire story from scratch, changing a few things here and there. You would be surprised how rewriting a story can make it 10x better than the original. In a way, your first draft can be the regurgitation of your ideas, and the second draft won't be cluttered with ideas (since they're all out on paper already) but will be a more concise, organized story that will probably lead better places.
Never happens to me, but then perhaps I was born a story-teller. I read from the age of four, also, and by eleven, I was practically finished with books. Even to this day I say read, read, read ... practice, practice, practice ...
I do mostly fiction, I may chose a title, let us say, The Lantern Carrier, then I build a story around this. I'm unusual, the thoughts flow as I write, and a kind of pattern emerge in my head. same with books and indeed poetry. I do not always go from A to Z, as I can jump and return. If you get a thought and it seems to be the middle rather than the beginning, just right it down.
This very day at Poetry Cafe, I suddenly got the thought of using a boat, as a metaphor for life. I only wrote one sentence, but a form has already taken shape in my head.
If you do not meditate, then I have an advantage. So much comes from intuition! Some has been written before and others flow straight from the ether. Loving thoughts.
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