Monday, 30 November 2009
(from page 155, hardback edition:)
"...all the books in the library are biographies."
"Of all the people who have ever lived and quite a few who are still to be born. We keep their entire lives here. Their beginnings, their marriages, their good days and their bad days, their deaths - of course. Everything they ever did."
(You also learn that these books contain all the things that haven't happened yet)
The young hero enters this very real library through a dream dimension. The speech quoted is by 'The Librarian' who apparently has no other name and is the only librarian in an endlessly large library.
I love this whole concept. It got me thinking and I've come up with a few questions and ideas to prompt further writing and thoughts.
What would be written about you on a good or bad day?
What about those in between days? The days that come and go without major incident. The ordinary days. The days that appear to fly by in blur or drag miserably.
What about the characters in your present WIP? We don't really give them an average day to live during the course of a novel or story. Why don't you take time out to write about one of their ordinary in-between days? If you feel it necessary to justify this time spent then you could use this average day as a catalyst for something bigger. After all, in life, it is often the small things that can affect huge change. A ripple effect can start from what may seem an inconsequential event.
Whether you choose to create more from the day or not - it may help you get to know your character further if you spend a day with them that is outside of the chaos, action or intensity of the plot.
Make a date with your character to have a cuppa and a catch up. Do you really know them? Are they the person you thought they were?
If you try this, please let me know how you get on.
The Power of Five series of books has its own website at http://www.powerof5.co.uk/ . For further information about Anthony Horowitz and his writing he can be found at http://www.anthonyhorowitz.com/ and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/AnthonyHorowitz .
Monday, 23 November 2009
The good news this past week is that the rewrites for my YA novel are going well. After completing a first draft and round of edits I had this nagging feeling that the story would work more effectively when told from the perspective of a first person narrative. But I knew this would require a lot of effort. So I decided to work on 3rd person and 1st person versions of the opening chapters with a view to comparing the two.
After completion I was sure that the first person narrative worked best. I gained a second opinion without sharing my own feelings. This reader was very enthusiastic about the first person narrative saying that it brought the story to life. Therefore, I am now busy rewriting my YA novel in first person. The plot, details & story are there already but nevertheless it is a lot of work to change the perspective. Am I mad? Probably. But mad or not I feel sure I've made the correct decision.
What about the wasps? Well I was writing in my writing hut when a dozy irritable wasp appeared from nowhere. I thought it was a loner come to shelter from the rain. But ten wasps later and a screaming phone call to my husband I realised that there were a whole family of the stinging nuisances. I hate killing anything and so at first tried to shoe them out windows and door. This wasn't an effective method. The wasps were grumpy and one dive bombed my head at such force that I began to lose my nerve. I'm ashamed to say I let my husband put the wasps out of their (& my) misery (aka slaughter them). Even though I don't like wasps I still felt all sad.
And the leak? With the wasps gone I thought I was free to continue with my writing. But then I noticed a slow spreading leak across my writing hut ceiling. I could have cried. Hubbie came to the rescue after my emotional plea and re-covered the offending side of the roof. Phew!
So all is well in my writing hut at the moment. The heater is at full blast and slipper socks are a must but it really is my favourite place to write.
Tuesday, 17 November 2009
A wonderful idea realised within a tight plot that enables you to join Tamara on her suspense filled journey of discovery.
Oh and the hard back edition is beautifully designed and so lovely to adorn your bookshelf.
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
Distractions come in many guises. Certain activities that distract from your writing time are easy enough to turn into inspiring moments spent. For instance time spent with family at the beach or doing a craft activity with children can help us create realistic character relationships, write about emotions and describe the waves crashing against rocks.
However, many distractions in our life are not so easy. There's the tedious responsibilities such as cleaning the bathroom, paying bills and doing your tax return. Then there's the irritating time drains. For instance: having to ring customer services for the tenth time to inform the obnoxious unable-to-think-outside-the-box customer representative that they have yet again miscalculated your bill.
I ask myself: can any distraction become inspiration?
Can the metamorphosis of distraction into inspiration enable our every moment to become an interesting, productive writing moment?
I think the answer is yes. Being a writer isn't just about sitting down with your manuscript editing and writing. It's about making the choice to commit to your identity as a writer so that during every moment you're willing to actively be a writer.
Maybe with this commitment, even the most irritating or mundane parts of life will become meaningful, useful and/or enjoyable.
On that note I'll get back to you after I've scrubbed the toilet and let you know if I managed to find any sliver of inspiration from that!