Friday, September 30, 2011

How I Solve Story Problems

It happens to all of us at some point. Writing is going along well and boom. A problem or stumbling block comes along. If I let the protagonist do that, the next scene won’t work, or she has to get herself out of this mess. How is she going to do it when she left her weapon at home.
Sometimes I begin to question my original idea, but most often I try a few strategies first.
One is to sleep on it. Somehow my brain goes to work when I sleep, and sometimes I wake with a good idea.
Gardening in very therapeutic. My brain can work on all kinds of ideas while my hands are pulling weeds.
A good long walk is kind of like gardening. It’s undisturbed time to mull over ideas and besides, exercise is always good for the brain.
Sometimes I get someone else’s take on the problem, like my son. I get a guy’s angle on it.
And then, in the end, I may just let the protagonist do what I don’t want him to do and see what happens. After all, there’s always the delete key.
Maybe other people don’t run into stumbling blocks when writing. But if you do, how do you handle it?

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