*DITL = Day In The Life. Also known as: Random thoughts on the writing life.
Near the end of this year’s NaNoWriMo, I had a terrifying realization: I need to change my story’s ending.
I thought about winging it. It didn’t seem too daunting because I know a lot about my characters and the detailed big picture behind the story. But, the idea of winging it went out the window pretty quickly. Just shy of the climax, I had to slam on the breaks because one of my minor characters threw a wrench into things.
He’s a villain.
Messing with my life is part of his job.
Basically, this guy is an old war hero. By old, I mean he’s in his late 800s. He’s about to tell someone off by listing his fantastical deeds on the glorious fields of battle, which meant I needed to have dates and locations for important battles throughout the last 800 years of history. The last millennium of history is full of major battles, so I also needed to know where this character would be and why. Which meant I needed to know more about this (pain in the butt) minor character.
My writing came to a grinding halt.
While I was as taking a break for research, I decided to do a little side reading so I could glean a few tidbits of wisdom before I rewrote the climax. Climaxes are kind of important.
So, I grabbed a book. It was awesome. I read it through in two days and – what have we here? – found a list of recommended books in the appendix! One thing lead to another, and I am currently reading book #4.
And it’s good.
I also cleaned up my writing files, printed off a bunch of helpful worksheets, and worked on detailed character profiles and scene charts.
Am I procrastinating?
I know what needs happen in the new climax, but I’m not ready to write it yet. There are still a few nuances and possible plot holes I need to work out first.
Thing is, NaNoWriMo was amazing, but I ended November feeling kind of burned out.
The recent break I’ve taken has been a much needed breath of air. I feel like the creative embers are starting to glow again. I don’t need a roaring flame, but I don’t want to craft a new climax in burnout mode.
I’ll get there.
I can feel it. I’m getting restless and the concepts banging around in my head are starting to reach a fever pitch. Pretty soon, I’ll have no choice but to throw some ink down and see how everything plays out on the page.