Finishing a long chapter, knowing the scenes are exactly as you want them, you've communicated important points for your storyline and you've developed your characters, is such a satisfying experience. As I put the finishing touches on this latest chapter for my sequel - it feels wonderful. So far, it might be one of my favorite scenes! Of the sequel... that is. I love it! It's original, interesting, fascinating and I can't stop thinking about it. I know one day, my readers will be talking about this chapter and these scenes with great enthusiasm. I can't wait to hear what they have to say.
Speaking with other writers is an exhilarating experience. It's so interesting to hear about the writing process of another author, when it's so different from your own.
When you're writing and writing and writing for days, the words, the scenes sometimes begin to blur. Today, I took a much needed break from the story, even though the scenes are still swirling in my head, begging for me to return to review every single word and sentence to make sure it's perfect (it's still a little rough). This is a good thing. When I go back in, I will have a nice clear mind to make necessary adjustments and see what needs to be added, deleted and worked further.
As I sat down to write one of my characters... I had an idea of who he was, the type of personality he would have, actions he would take. Then, as I began to write, I realized he wasn't that way at all. Odd. Can't explain it. He was someone else, so I went with it... and it works, brilliantly. How can that be? Who knows... sometimes you just have to listen to hear the character speak to you and trust what you hear. Then, watch the magic happen. It's always scary at first, but somehow seems to fall seamlessly into place, the way it was meant to. The positive and continual feedback I get from readers fuels my writing. I swear, it's like rocket fuel for my brain... it's making the sequel come out faster. I'm proud to say, today, I hit 101 pages! But most importantly, I love all of it. :-)
Creating a new chapter is always very different. The chapter I'm currently working on in my sequel happens to be a long one and is taking a lot of time to get "just right". I liken it to throwing hunks of clay on a table. You just keep throwing stuff down, big pieces, little pieces... in the general area you want them. Then you start to mold it. Scrape some away, refine some, smooth some, add a little here and there and begin to shape it. That's what it's like to create this new chapter. As usual, I thought I might be sculpting one particular object and it turns out to be something completely different, but more wonderful than I originally thought. The story has a life of its own - I've learned to listen to it and create it exactly as it wants to be. :-)
Sometimes when I write, I say, am I doing the right thing? Does anyone care about what I'm writing about? Or, am I wasting my time? I know the answer in my heart. Writing, for me, is like breathing... the absolute right thing to do. When readers write to me to say the story of The 13th Apostle has touched them in some meaningful way, I know I've fulfilled my destiny (or part of it) in some small way and it validates all of my hard work. When we listen to our passion in life, so many wonderful things happen and it sets our feet upon the path we are meant to travel. As I continue to work on my sequel I feel so alive... my readers have done so much to remind me of what I love to do and to keep doing it. Thank you to everyone who has supported me and The 13th Apostle! On to book II now... :-)
My dog Buster... Being with him makes me so happy. I know it may sound sappy and silly, but being with my dog brings such happiness and peace to me, that all I want to do is sit at my computer with him on my lap and write. His warm body, all 26 lbs. 1 oz. of it just feels like what love (of any kind) is supposed to feel like. We don't have to be doing anything special or exciting, just being with him is enough. In such a state of peace and happiness with Buster, all good things happen. So Buster - let's work on the sequel! :-) With Buster with me, no doubt this chapter I'm working on today will include some wild new ideas!
Friday night, I met with the most wonderful bunch of women and men... The Bookies Book Club. :-) They all read my novel, The 13th Apostle, and I couldn't have been more excited to discuss the writing process and my thoughts as I wrote my book, with them. Our engaging discussion and all the feedback I received helped me think about the sequel. It was very stimulating to talk about the story as I think about what I want to continue writing about in the sequel. It really made me happy and excited to hear how badly they are awaiting the second installment! I said to myself, "Get to work Raina... Write! Finish the sequel!" :-) THAT got my creative juices flowing and I can't wait to return to the story tomorrow morning, first thing! Talk about validation... My readers couldn't have given me a better gift tonight... and I made a bunch of new friends.... :-) Thank you Maria Piccirillo and The Bookies Book Club!!! xoxo
Even when I'm not sure what's going to happen, if I'm in the mood to write, I write. Somehow, someway, the story just comes out. It can feel scary, because you don't know what will happen next in the story, but you feel it's right when you read it on your computer screen or on paper. This is the time I stumble upon interesting research that I include in my writing or I get an idea I never had before. There is something important and creative about allowing yourself to be open to whatever comes to mind and going with it.
Wasn't sure where to go, what to do with some new characters in my sequel. Although I have a general idea of who they will be, what they will/won't do in the story, I wasn't sure how to introduce one particular character. Then, WHAMO, it just started to come out. His actions, his thought process, his feelings about things... all just came out as I wrote, as if he were there the whole time, just waiting to be discovered. And... he's so complex and awesome! It is amazing to see these first glimpses of a character for yourself. I feel as though I'm meeting him for the first time myself. Weird... I like him better than I thought I ever could or would. Writing a story, this story, is such an amazing process for me. Every time I sit down to write, I feel so happy!