Monday, June 29, 2009

Ending Throes

I am in the throes of trying to finish a book. At this point in a manuscript I drive myself and everyone around me crazy. I'm glaze-eyed, I stare out windows. I forget things.

It becomes particularly bad (as in for the past three days) when I get stuck. I have no time to get stuck, understand, but I do it just the same. Plot points I expected to come together aren't quite making it. Or I can't figure out how to make them happen. Or happen at their best. I wouldn't have this problem if I didn't have Character A doing this, Character B doing that, and Character C doing something else, all going around each other, all with their own motivations, which mess up someone else's plot line. A can't do what I thought she'd be doing right now, because she's with B, and B wouldn't let her, and C ...

Aayyo, as my grandmother would say.

The thing that really gets me is--when it's all finally, somehow, who-knows-how-I-managed-it written, and I read it over, the story all looks so natural. Of course it had to happen that way. Everything just dovetails and works, and why in the world was it so hard? Why didn't the writing just flow from my fingers?

My wonderful husband's patience really gets a work-out during these times. He tries to be supportive and stay out of my way. But good husbands require a certain amount of care and feeding, and he's certainly lacking for my attention of late. Oh, I feed him. My mind's just ... not all there.

I have a few days this week to try to get unstuck and hammer out pages--before the hordes descend for the fourth. I still don't know where we're going to sleep everyone, and what I'm going to feed everyone, and right now I don't have time to think about it. These things have a way of working themselves out.

This post is now done, and I can only hope I've made half a lick of sense.

In my next life I'm a secretary.


Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

The frenzy of approaching the writing goal...eating at my desk, not answering emails, phone calls and ignoring my husband's presence in the room! Looking down at my mismatched outfit and wondering why it's looked the same as yesterday's. LOL!

Can't wait to celebrate with you the completion of your book and want to be one of the first to read it!

Ann Baldwin said...

Thank you for sharing what's it's like for you as a writer and what you go through; it helps those like me just getting started with the novel writing process know what to expect.

Sheila Deeth said...

Thank you. I feel much better now.

Jill Eileen Smith said...

Hey Brandilyn, I've had something similar happen with books two and three in my first series. Both felt like the endings were attached to the Energizer Bunny and they just kept going and going and going...but you're right, eventually the story fits together and the ending becomes clear.

Later, we look back and think this was fun! :)

Happy hammering~

Peg Brantley said...

SFD will be wrapped up, well . . . soon. I'm where you've been many times, for the first time—that counts, anyway. The ending-ending is quite clear. It's the getting to the ending-ending that is proving elusive.

I know I need to move myself out of the way, but first I have to at least have things pointed in the right direction.

The other day I found a bazillion loose threads. Some were brilliant. Most were obviously written by a gang lunatics who helped themselves to my computer when I was away fixing dinner or something. No one lunatic could do that much damange.

Speaking of dinner, the Love of My Life has had to get used to eating alone because even when I'm there, I'm not.

I love this why???

johnny dangerous said...

Aristotle told writers to 'write with the end in view.' And so I have an awfully good idea of how my work-in-progress (the sequel to BLEEDER) will end. It's GETTING there, through the broad and terrifying middle, that has me stuck this week. I'm sketching an outline (of sorts) working backwards from the end - asking, "for this to happen, what must come before it?" This 'retrograde plotting' is helping me to get away from the scary 'what happens next?' problem.

John Desjarlais

Tina said...

Enjoyed reading this post and glad I am normal and I've not published a fraction of the amount of books you have! It's great to have a supportive hubby during this phase isn't it? May God bless your latest work.