I’ve wanted to be a published author since I was 3 years old. I couldn’t read yet, but I loved books and making up stories. I couldn’t draw worth crap – still can’t – so I’d copy the words from my favorite books onto paper and proclaim myself a writer!
A couple weeks ago, I proclaimed my biggest goal for 2016 was to finally get over my fear to submit my work. I’m not new to the writing game. I write legal reports and non-fiction news pieces each and every day. For whatever reason, my fiction stays hidden. Only very few have ever read snippets of my fiction.
This year that changes. So, in our Weekend WIP, I’ll share with you where I am in my journey to the Maggie’s. I have at least three novels in different genres of fiction going (plus scads more stuffed under the bed). This year, I’ve committed to submit at least one to the Maggie’s by the April 30th deadline.
The first contender I’m planning to submit is a lighthearted romantic comedy that focuses on the rehabilitation of a burnt out lawyer. Hmm, there just might a bit of wanderlust in this story about me. Perhaps a little “what if” exploration – if I hadn’t been such a legal beagle and spent more time being creative, where could I be today?
I’ll be spending the weekend with Jenna, our ex-lawyer, as she tries to figure it all out. It’s going to be a real fun weekend for me. I always know how my stories begin and end, but the middle is always a mystery until I write it.
As much as I plan everything else in life (I’m quite OCD with it, actually) the middle falls flat if I plan ahead. When I veer off course I look back at the plan and see failure. It’s like a face plant and then I freeze and walk away from the story. When I look back I get depressed at yet another dead end.
UGH! I’ve never looked at the deviation from my scripted plan as an opportunity. Maybe the deviation is better for the characters?
So, I’m going to trust that the story and its characters will carry me from my beginning to my end. I’m not planning the middle. I’m not outlining. I’m not story boarding. NOTHING.
And, if I find that the original ending doesn’t fit? So what! I’ll have an even better ending to a great and solid story.
As a fiction writer, maybe I’m not a planner. I don’t consider myself a pantser either. I guess I’ll call myself a “plantser” and give myself permission to make up the middle as I write it. 😉
Whatever your next comfort zone bust goal is, I hope you make some progress toward it this weekend. Please share how it goes!