Friday, 2 November 2012

Day Two - Setting the scene

I got a little in front yesterday, which is always a good idea, and the writing flowed fairly smoothly, conjuring people and events out of the blue.

I do have a scratch plan, but no details, and giving people names and rounding out characters will have to do, to start with. And what were the Brits up to in the 14th Century, when the Muslims were creating decorations like tiles for hot weather...and water gardens everywhere...

My choice of the conspiracy thriller specifically allows me to have characters pontificate, or fill each other in on back history, however wooden it sounds: "As you probably know..."  Exotic locations allow that kind of touristy detail, too (I've chosen Seville for a variety of reasons).

So I am figuring out characters, and locations, and using research to keep the details going, although the real action hasn't begun yet.  Scrivener is proving terrific, as I expected.  I am ahead of the curve in sheer numbers of words, and still have a few scenes and ideas in my head to keep it going.

From past experience I know it is good to get in front and stay there, during Week One, because it is easy to start to lose momentum in Week Two, when the sheer size of the task hits, and you feel like you've thrown all your best ideas at it, and have a long way to go.

That's when you have to resist the temptation to go back and edit out any inconsistencies, or infelicities, and just continue to hack away at the words, using every trick in the book, lists, descriptions of places, bits of half-digested research, sheer idle wordage, dialogue, which can rattle on, etc.

Meanwhile, I am trying to get the skeleton laid down, decide on a MacGuffin, and position the characters around the city map, for which my memories, guidebooks from the library, and Google Maps are proving very useful.


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