Who's In Control?
from Jody Feldman
I do not consciously control what, for me, is the sweetest morsel of the writing process. And the preceding statement may be true on two levels. I do not know the if I am capable of controlling it and I've learned not to try. Let me explain with an example.
I’ve just started writing something completely new. By new, I mean, as of this posting, 131–current-words new. The idea came to me in 2011, and I started playing around with it just before I received the green light to write two more Gollywhopper Games books. But that ‘s another story for another day. The point is, for the last month, before I ever thought about writing the first sentence, I hearkened back to what’s been my most successful process. I’ve taken much time and brain power to draw together some of the larger overall ideas that have already made this a book I am very excited about.
Rewind to, oh, four months or more before I’d even remembered I had this story in my idea files. I was just sitting there thinking about who-knows-what when there came to me the thought of using a certain object that could get my characters out of trouble. So as not to include potential spoilers, let’s say this element was a monkey wrench. I was intrigued, and it humored me, but I wasn’t working on anything, whatsoever, where my characters might need a monkey wrench.
Fast forward to this past Thursday when I was researching what I thought might be the perfect occupation for an important adult character. Let’s say, I had decided he’d be involved in the trucking business. I know nothing about the trucking business, so I started to do some research. One website led to another and another then to one about a toolmaker. Suddenly, that occupation seemed to work so much better with the plot I’d been developing, and then ...
I remembered the monkey wrench. Not only had a couple pieces clinked into place, but, together, they put the plot in total synch. And such connections form that sweetest morsel of the writing process.
Is all that the result of intuitive perception? Some otherworldly muse? Hard work?
I don’t know. And does it matter?
What do you think?
P.S. You now have until the end of January to enter for a chance to win for your school (no matter if you’re an educator or parent or otherwise connected to a school) a FREE Skype or school visit. Details in last month’s post; even more in the contest section here.