A Loose Framework

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As I head into the second month of consistent writing on this novel project (yes, it’s new and it’s a novel…badaba-ching!), I’m reminded again that a light, flexible framework is the best way for me to form my story. Because I tend to be a write-to-discover kinda writer. A Jack Kerouac kinda writer, whose words and ideas twist and dip to the beautiful rhythm of a sax and a snare with the whoosh and swish of feelings and insights and dreams and thoughts that meld and blend and become a story, yeah!

In other words, J.K Rowling I am not. I don’t have the next seven paragraphs mapped out, much less seven books.

Yes, I have a plot (in the loosest sense of the term) and some characters (many still only partially defined), and a general sense of what I’d like to get out of this whole thing (a sense of completion, at the very least!), but it’s all very transient and ephemeral. I’m like a spider who spins a beautiful, complex-yet-symmetrical web, only to have part of it destroyed by a great bumbling epiphany or a gust of insight. So I rebuild, yet each time I do the web is different, sections of old remapped to pieces of new. Beautiful again in a new way.

Wow, that analogy was almost awesome.

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2 thoughts on “A Loose Framework

  1. Good for you! I’m sure that’s the way to do it – ideas come out of writing, not the other way round.

    The freshest, most inpsiring, most exciting part of writing a novel is always the first chapter, page, sentence. After that the path gets narrower and narrower until, when you’re about half way through and you know where it’s all leading, the hard work starts of putting one word after the other until you reach the end.

    Then it becomes fun again. You can see the shape you didn’t know was there and you can start cutting and re-writing to improve it.

    • Samson

      Hi Martin!

      Interesting, I have almost precisely the opposite experience when I write: the beginning for me can sometimes be very difficult as I struggle to determine voice and tone. (Sometimes it’s a piece of cake, too. Go figure). Then, as I build the story, I find I have soooo many choices that it becomes difficult for me to contain the story and stay on plot. This is where the “framework” part of my loose framework comes into play: it (usually) keeps me focused on the prize. Usually. Sometimes. Every once in a while. Let’s just say I try my best to stay on plot.

      I love the rewriting part, too. It’s fun to go back and fill in the blanks and fill out the characters. Which is funny, because that’s the part every one of my students hated/were terrified of. Rewriting was to be avoided at all costs in their book. Me, I can’t wait to get to it.

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