Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Linear or Puzzle Pieces?

For those of you not keeping up on Twitter, two major midterms stalled my post Monday. Now, I'm all studied out and I really want to write about something that has nothing to do with ASL or Japanese!

I'm sure everyone has experienced what it's like to be inspired. That rush of ideas that suddenly strikes, or just the right mood to make you defeat your inner critic and have potential to soar above the daily word count. Sometimes it hits for something specific and sometimes it can be directed into anything, so long as it gets out.

One of the latter moods struck me after I finished watching "I am Number Four" with my dad. It was a pretty good movie, I recommend it if you want some fun entertainment. Back to the point, though. That unfocused inspiration came to me once I got home to my computer. I had one dilemma: what should I write with this opportunity? At the point I'm at in my WIP, there is relatively low action and I wanted some excitement. This led me to wonder if I should write a future scene in the plot instead.

My typical style, whether I like it or not, is very linear. I have to have all the middle details written before I get to the juicy parts. Chapter 2 has to be written after Chapter 1. When these unfocused moods strike, I'll blast music through my headphones and think through my favorite future scenes. I've only ever skipped ahead to writing those scenes twice, and both times my mood was very content with my decision.

So how do you write? Are you like me where A has to come before B before C can happen? Do you like writing whatever scene that springs to mind like a series of puzzle pieces that you put together once they're all put down? Somewhere in between?

On a side note, thanks to the most recent followers for your comments (and welcome to the blog!) and to the older followers who consistently make my day.


  1. A must come before B usually- except in poetry- sometimes I do the first stanza, then in the next few stanzas I only do the rhyming lines- then go back and fill in what comes before the rhyme. :)
    Best of luck on your tests!

  2. Hey!

    I'm the same, A before B followed by C. I take notes though, plan out the action scenes often well ahead of time when the mood strikes so that when I get there I can draw on myself for inspiration!

  3. Hi BET, I have your Pay It Forward home-made gift ready! I need a mailing address on where to send it, though. You can e-mail me at readmynovel[at]gmaildotcom. (It's not fancy, but I think it's cute.) Hope you like it. :)

    T.K. Richardson

  4. I'm very linear too, though I am currently pantsing my current novel. Sometimes I'll write scenes from other novels I haven't started yet, but I've never been able to write ahead. It's just too "unclean", I suppose you could say.

  5. ...when I write, the road is never straight, and far from planned. If suddenly an idea for chapter 3 blossoms like spring time...chapter 2 is put aside. When lightning strikes, it's never a straight arrow;)