I've been pondering this very thing lately because I've got a new book fermenting in my brain. Along with it comes first love, the kind that develops during the course of a new story idea and the fleshing out of new characters with their firsts: first meet, first kiss, first fight... you get the idea. ;)
Typing The End is ultimately satisfying because of the limitless publishing possibilities, but beginning anew is quite the adventure. Expectation. Suspense. A compass that takes you where you want to go. You name it! When it comes to writing a new book, everything is at a writer's disposal. But the choices a writer makes, the deeper into the book a writer goes, no matter how intricately plotted or conceived, oftentimes deviate from the designated fork in the road.
To follow the plot or not? That is the question.
Characters like to blindside writers, don't they? I find this part of the writing process to be the most intriquing part. When a character comes fully-fleshed out, it's not like I have any say in the matter when that fork presents itself.
Once realized, stories become entities that no longer require a writer's vision.
I love this part about writing the most. That moment when the story unfolds as if it is writing itself and the characters speak as though alive. (Though it can get crowded up in here when that happens.
I'm having a moment like this now. While finishing up my current book, I had a character who simply wouldn't allow me to write a scene. He didn't like being told what to do. (He's an Alpha male, of course and wanted things his way). His way however, meant scaring my inner critique, that good ol' tried and true internal editor. You know the one, or ones, in my case. You see, my internal editor is a them, not a who. They are the church choir staring over my shoulder, which makes it quite crowded in my tiny office space. When the writing is good, it's so very, very good. (Cue Hallelujah chorus, prayer hands and swaying bodies.) But when the writing is bad, not bad writing, mind you, but writing that deviates to the deliciously bad and sexy, well... things can get ugly up in here.
Times like these call for extreme measures. Believe me, I know. That's why I love Alpha heroes. Strong and sure of themselves, they won't let anyone stand in their way to a happy ending. They're prepared to fight through the massing crowd with savvy and sword to exact my cooperation. Until, my handsome hero defeats said internal editors and sends them packing off to the choir loft where they belong, I'm sometimes at a character's mercy. And thankfully so. Because when a truly fleshed-out character wants to make you his be-otch, you know the writing's good.
When your story takes an unexpected turn, give your characters and stories their firsts and lasts. Allow them to come to life. Doing so, could possibly bring salvation.
How do you deal with that pesky Internal Editor?