Wednesday, July 08, 2009

keeping to the script

Day 314 of 365 in the “Marathon of the Dope” . . .


As I finished off chapter 12 of my novel’s second draft I became somewhat stalled and left with a bit of a quandary.

You see, a character at the end of Chapter 12 gets away and carries on his life, when my mind and story cried for this character to feel a world fo hurt.

If I make this character experience a world of hurt, then I have to significantly re-write the last two chapters - and I mean re-write by a lot!

If I leave it the way it is then it seems kind of anti-climactic (not that it was supposed to climax at that point just ratchet up a notch or two) and the story concludes over the next two chapters in a satisfactory way - but maybe not a stellar one.

So, do I just bite the bullet and inflict the world of hurt and screw up my timetable with massive ending re-writes, or do I carry on as if nothing in my mind has happened (you know what I mean, har har) and finish it the way it was originally scripted?

And you thought writing was just about slapping words down on pages and sucking somebody in to book-forming then for you to distribute to the masses. . .

I’ll give it some more thoughts and add yours (from comments) to them - if you have any.

I know it all sounds very abstract, but I know you have imagination and are up to the task.


Until tomorrow . . .


  1. Anonymous10:21 am


    What Would Joss Do?

  2. Zilla's Other Half12:36 pm

    Have we heard that chapter yet? I think I'd like to hear/read it as written before making a decision. It isn't always a bad thing for characters to live and have a 'happy (ish)' ending. I think happy endings became blasei because they seemed fake and there were too many of them. Now everyone dies and everything's heartwrenching and unhappy and that can get to be too much too.

    I think I dislike it especially when characters are killed off, seemingly expressly for the purpose of generating that angst. Will there be reflection in the story because of the death? Will others note it? Will it be isolated and alone and otherwise have no more effect on the story than whether that person went on, had kids, invented space flight etc - which was also not included in the story?

    I guess it just needs to feel right. I can understand it too, because the one story I've been stalled on for some time, I know the ending - or at least I think I do right now. But I don't know if a subsidiary character lives or dies and that will have an 'effect' so to speak on the other characters in the story and the unspoken future for same. Guess I just have to get passed my block to find out what happens.

  3. I think I'm going to let him escape for the moment. He has a destiny tied up with another character that needs to play out which happens a little later in the tale anyhow.

    As to what would Joss do? Well, he would have a beautiful, sympathetic character which you have invested emotional time in - then turn around and stick a lawnmower blade in his/her left eye socket just to kick his audience in the goolies!

    I'm not sure the Joss approach will work in my tale since this character is not one you really will sympathize with anyhow.

    Thanks for the help!

    Isn't it great fun speaking in vagaries? ;)