Monday, July 22, 2013

Head Desk Moments

I've run into some issues with one of the books I'm writing. I love the characters and the basic plot, but it needs some time marinating while I figure out how to shake up some of the things that need to be shaken.

That's not the problem. I'm good with letting books sit and simmer while I work on something else. My problem is that in my head, this is Book #1 in my Blue Moose series so it has to be done first.

Um. No.

It has to be first in the mini-series of 4 books that revolve around that family, but there's no reason it has to be the very first.

This thought totally surprised me this morning. One of the other three stories swirling around in my head could easily be Book #1. Talk about a Head Desk moment.

It's weird when my fictional world becomes so real that it surprises me that I can change things. Until it's published, nothing is written in stone. So, today I'm dabbling with another possible Book #1 and loving it.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who gets a little blindsided by these types of things!

65 comments:

  1. I was blindsided by two more books in my series!
    Just start writing another one and see where it takes you.

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  2. I was blindsided by one of my characters once, which changed the whole complexion of the book. It was quite exciting.

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  3. You played the "What if?" game and won! Good for you.

    I struggled with Book III of mine because the main character alone didn't have a strong enough voice. Then I introduced another one who actually became the main character, and it worked.

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  4. Yes, I have totally had moments like this, where the solution to an "insurmountable" problem is actually quite simple -- if you approach it from a different direction.

    I've even had cases where a scene wasn't working and the dialogue didn't fit the characters, but I needed these things said ... and I realized that if I changed which characters said which lines (almost without changing the lines!) it suddenly came all together!!

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  5. Alex - true! I started one today - about 1500 words so far. Fun characters :)

    Jeff - it really is! I love those moments when our subconscious takes over! :)

    Diane - glad to hear that! I hope this one will the The One to kick off the series!

    Dianne - going outside that box does help! Love the dialogue switch!!! I'm going to keep that one to try for myself - thanks :)

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  6. I'm blindsided all the time - it still surprises me when I catch myself in a rut!

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  7. I'm working on a MG manuscript now and I am making a lot of changes to it. I've changed the main character's name and the ending. I'm much happier with it now.

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  8. Yay!!! It's great to be all flexible in a most creative and writerly way!! Good for you!! Take care
    x

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  9. Sometimes characters dicrate ans demamd the direction of the story including the twists and.turns.

    My characters surprise me at how.well they know my MS. I reapect their feednack. Sometimes you just have to go with it.

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  10. Beth - I love it too! It can sure change the way my brain's been working! :)

    CWintheBBP - I love when those changes improve things! And having the right name is a must!

    Old Kitty - thanks! I love the flexibility of this avocation! :)

    Stephen - those characters really do know what they're doing most of the time! Just going with it is so much fun too! :)

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  11. Isn't it great when it finally comes to you?

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  12. Hey Jemi,

    You dabbled and you tweaked. Hope that sounded right.

    It seems having a head desk moment has brought revelation that makes you happy.

    As for me, I keep things simple. Simple works for me. I go one step at a time, in workable amounts that lead to the ultimate goal.

    All the best, eh. Sorry couldn't resist saying "eh", eh.

    Gary :)

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  13. Teresa - it is! I'm having fun with my new idea too :)

    Gary - I'd be disappointed it you didn't say 'eh', eh? :) I like to look at things one thing at a time too - but sometimes that's hard to do :)

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  14. Awesome you figured out a better way to write it. And that's the great thing about an unpublished book. It can be changed. Good luck with the changes.

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  15. Thanks Natalie - I'm hoping this all works together somehow - we'll see :P

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  16. What a great realization. It is amazing when we see things in a whole new way. How exciting that you can still work on the series and maybe have a whole new order. :) Best of luck!
    ~Jess

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  17. Jess - it really was helpful! I love when my outlook gets a refresh! thanks so much!

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  18. Jemi, I hope the theme park cartoon helped!! Sometimes a little change in our story leads to a ripple effect. On the positive side, be thankful you have so many stories bursting around in your head.

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  19. I've never written a series, so that's never happened directly, but I do get blindsided by new characters who pop up and decide to make the story their own!

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  20. hope the whole project turns out successful in the end :)

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  21. This has happened to me, too. It's as if a door opens onto a whole new room you didn't even realize was there.

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  22. LOL! No you're not. :D So funny when that happens!

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  23. Denise - I loved that cartoon! It is perfect!! :) And, yes, I'm always glad the stories are whirling around in there :)

    Annalisa - me too! That's always fun as well! those characters really have minds of their own!

    Dezzy - thanks! Me too :P

    Carol - that's a perfect way to describe it! Love it :)

    Lisa - yay! Always good not to be alone in the crazies :)

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  24. That's funny, Jemi. I realized that I do the same thing. Thinking the book is set in concrete once it's on paper. Nice to read this post and hear your voice in the words again. Happy summer!

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  25. Roxy - thanks! It's funny how quickly those things we create become 'real' and unchangeable! :)

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  26. I like it when serial books can be read (or written) out of order and that they can stand alone. I see this as a good sign.

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  27. Medeia - thanks! Me too. I like my serial books the same way :)

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  28. Happy marinating! Hope you work it out...
    I've just been tossing around a novella idea but it would be the 4th in my trilogy... Can you do that? Is the question I keep asking :)

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  29. Flexibility! Gotta have it when you're trying to write books. You got it.

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  30. I think it's great that you have all these ideas, Jemi!

    All the best!

    Nas

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  31. Michelle - why not? One of the joys of this time in publishing is you can do a whole lot!

    Lee - flexibility is indeed the key! :)

    Nas - thanks! I do love having my brain full of stories! :)

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  32. omgosh! Nope, you're not the only one!! I get blindsided all the time.

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  33. Lynda - I'm so glad I'm not alone! I had another mini-epiphany last night (with help from crit buddies) :)

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  34. Hi Jemi,

    It's amazing what your subconscious comes up with when you just let it float....

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  35. Maria - exactly!! Love the way the brain works ... most of the time! :P

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  36. This is so true! And when the world is that real, I think that's a big part of how you know you have a solid book. :)

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  37. Martina - I hope so!! It still needs a lot of work, but I think I'm starting to find the right path! :)

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  38. Are you the only one? Heck no. I'm forever getting in my own way because I get stuck thinking I have to go in one direction when there are really lots of possibilities.

    Glad you got unstuck.

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  39. Linda - thanks - me too! I hate feeling like I'm in quicksand - much more fun to keep those fingers flying :)

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  40. I LOVE those moments. They are one of the best perks of the process.

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  41. Leslie - they really are! Love that feeling of relief mixed with amusement at my block head :)

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  42. My characters blindside me all the time, and I love it. I jerk my hands away from the keyboard, read the words I just typed, and go with it.

    So far, though, I haven't had a whole book change its mind. That would be a little scary. :D

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  43. Pat - it is more than a little scary, but so far I THINK it's working... time will tell! :)

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  44. I think head desk moments are a common occurrence among writers. We should probably wear helmets while we write!

    Good luck with your new revelations!

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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  45. Good idea Laura!! Thanks! I'm hoping I'm in the right direction now! :)

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  46. That's so true. I had a similar experience. I was thinking about how the first few paragraphs of a chapter weren't exciting enough, and I didn't know how to make them more exciting, and then it hit me that I could totally start the chapter elsewhere. And it was like this huge revelation.

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  47. MP - I know! It's an amazing feeling when you realize it's fictional!!! :)

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  48. I suppose that the possibilities are endless... you just have to keep an open mind. And flexibility helps too...
    Writer In Transit

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  49. Michelle - open mind and flexibility - the perfect combination for a writer! :)

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  50. Glad you got it sorted. It's funny how our brains get stuck into a set way of viewing something and then when we see it differently it all seems so obvious.

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  51. Rosalind - it is. I definitely get stuck in the 'it's this way' thing. Gotta work on that!

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  52. Books like to do that I've noticed, make things hard and then tell us something that makes us want to hit our heads on our desks.
    I am glad you solved your writing problem!

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  53. Jack - exactly! It all adds to the fun I guess! :)

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  54. Don't you love that? You can agonize over a story issue FOREVER, and then, suddenly, the solution just seems so simple! Crazy. Good luck changing everything accordingly.

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  55. yup. that is a total head desk moment. But now you have all these possiblities open to you!
    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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  56. Caryn - thanks! It's still fermenting but I think it will all work out! :)

    Nutschell - and I love the possibilities! I think that's one of the very best parts of being a writer! :)

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  57. It's always good to have choices, Jemi. You'll figure it out. Good luck! :)

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  58. I left a comment, but blogger appears to have swallowed it!

    Can't remember what I said now. Sorry!

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  59. Wendy - I do like my choices too!! Always good to have lots :)

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  60. It sounds like you hit on something really important--we're creating and that should be fluid, open to ideas and change. Thanks for sharing the *head desk* because it was worth it. ;)

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  61. Tricia - exactly! I'm happy with the new opportunities with my mini revelation! :)

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  62. I definitely get blindsided by these kinds of things all the time. But often that's a good thing. :)

    Good luck, Jemi, with your blindsiding.

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  63. Thanks Stina - I don't generally mind being blindsided at all - adds to the fun! And congrats again!!!!!! :)

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  64. I totally know what you mean--when fictional ideas become so set you can't imagine changing them.

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  65. Lydia - it's weird isn't it, how real it all becomes! :)

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