Sometimes writing can be all about momentum; about that continuous rush of adding a word to a sentence to a paragraph to a page to a chapter to a novel. If you lose the thread of your thoughts along the way it can be difficult to pick it back up and you can find yourself lost in the midst of a scene with no idea why you were writing it.
Mostly when this happens I try and go with the flow, if there is any. I’m confident enough in my writing to know that if I begin something then somewhere my mind has completed the piece already and I just have to keep typing in order for it to be revealed. As long as I can just make it to the next word, or line or the end of the paragraph I know that it will resolve itself in someway; that there will be a reason for it, even if I’m not fully aware of the rationale in my concious mind.
That’s how it feels at the moment: with my second novel idea. I have all but abandoned the first; it waits in the wings until my exploration of this new story is complete somehow. The initial idea was a slog: I had to work for it and tease it out of my brain, never understanding the details and struggling with the plot and the characters and their part in the story I wanted to tell. In fact, the story I wanted to tell evolved so much during this process that the original idea, although still vaguely present, has been swallowed by a greater journey and potential new themes. Now it hangs cautiously in the background, biding it’s time.
This newer story is a novelty. It has been stitched together in my mind and my fingers ache to write it while my eyes can’t wait to read it. I begin with a vague comprehension of a scene that needs to happen somewhere within it, between characters not yet fully defined but I know them well enough to jump straight in and record the words required in order to write it all down. I suppose when I described this process as an ‘exploration’, above, I was totally accurate: I am investigating through writing, to see how the story fits on the page and if I could translate it from my mind into a novel.
I’m excited. I want to explore. I’m enjoying it. As long as the momentum is there I intend to keep going. And, when it isn’t (which invariably will occur one day in the future I’m sure) I’ll have something to look back on to spark off this excitement again, to inspire and intrigue me and remind me that this story is one that needs to be told, and I’m the one who can tell it.