Saturday, July 27, 2013

Stories Are Composed of Scenes - I Get That

Coming Late August
The Author:
Sits down at great grandmother's desk.
Waits for laptop to boot up.
Plays with cat.
Does twitter.
Logs into Word Whores blog, ready to write.
Checks topic for week: "Scene Goal: Why You Should Have One, Pantsters Beware."
Um, NO! What???? Are we sure this week's topic isn't oh-say "Cover Reveals"?  Cause I have two sparkly ones to reveal...
More twitter.
Rechecks topic. Still the same.
Rereads fellow Word Whores posts for the week.

Discover I'm pretty much on board with Allison. Have already discussed "Save the Cat" scene writing methodology and what I got out of that book and others (hero starts book in one mental place and finishes up in another after a lot of stuff happens.) I diligently read books and posts on nuts and bolts of writers' craft but my brain wanders. Not to say they aren't excellent books! The lack is totally mine...

Coming Sept 16, 2013
I don't plot my scenes with any detail in advance. I never know what a scene is going to accomplish or how long it'll be until it's over and on the page.  I feel I've mentioned my superstitions about my Muse enough times here...but she HATES structure LOL. I just sit down and I write. Sometimes I have a good idea what the next scene will have to be about but I go into the flow and the words just come. For instance, all week I've been writing the climactic magick battle between my main characters (a shifter, a witch, a hereditary king) and my villains (a witch queen, her sister witch and Ancient Evil) in a new paranormal WIP. Without edging into next week's topic, which is drafting versus editing, I know who wins, ok? I have a general idea what has to happen but  already there have been twists and turns I wasn't expecting.

I also, as I may have mentioned in the past, sometimes indulge myself in writing long, involved scenes that don't advance the plot a whit (oh the horror) but which I personally enjoy the HECK out of. OK, yes, they get deleted during editing but, Dear Readers, I write first for me, because I want to read the story about these people. If I'm not enjoying the story, how can I make it enjoyable for anyone else to read?  Then it becomes my responsibility as an author to make the final, published book tight and full of conflict and tension and have only scenes that advance the characters to their goals. Sometimes I trim a scene that was wowza (to me) and if this was a Peter Jackson movie, you could enjoy it on the extended blu ray edition but it doesn't make the novel because it was fun but a plot distraction.

My process isn't pretty. There are no colored 3X5 cards or outlines constructed with military precision - sorry! (Maybe it's a good thing the Word Whores didn't ask for any of that before handing me the keys LOL.)

And I snuck in my two new covers and they ARE relevant to the topic because oh, books! Which are composed of scenes!

You can find more details about my upcoming books on my blog.


  1. and they are LOVELY covers, too!

  2. Pretty covers...oh, were you saying something too? ;)

    Good point, if you don't love your characters and get a kick out of the scenes they are in then your readers won't.