Word Count: 8369
Draft first. Edit later.
I keep finding it hard to turn off my inner editor. I want to go back, reread, and edit what I wrote yesterday before I start writing today. THIS IS A BAD HABIT! Over the years I have formed a lot of habits that are counterproductive. My goal is to hit 50K words by the end of November. I can’t do this if I keep looking back instead of looking ahead. So, I’ll make a note using the ADD COMMENT box in MSWord and move on. I just need to be able to remember what I want to add and shelve for later. Otherwise, I won’t win NaNoWriMo this year.
I ended yesterday’s scene after building a fair amount of tension. I accomplished my goal and introduced Dreven to the world. Now I need to write the inciting incident. This is the point in the story when the action really kicks up. Conflict arises and the main character’s life will change forever. This is the moment that kicks my plot into action, but how do I approach it.
Lizzy,” he said as I’d just ascended the bottom step.
“What? How?” He stammered with his words just as he’d done this morning. I knew he wanted to ask me something, but he was having difficulty spitting it out.
“What is it Dreven?” He opened his mouth, but no words came out. I could see the conflict going on behind his eyes, but what he was conflicted about, I didn’t know.
“Nothing,” he replied. “Good night, Lizzy.”
“Good night, Dreven.”
The last scene ended with the reader asking What did he want to say? Why didn’t he say it? There is definite tension between these two, unspoken words that are left to the reader’s imagination. Now, how do I open the next scene?
There a ton of possibilities. I have rolled them around in my head but I still have not figured out which direction I want to go.
- Lizzy making tea in the kitchen (hook with the sound of the whistling teapot)
- Open with a nightmare about Lizzy’s mother
- The smell of breakfast cooking in the kitchen
- The sound of birds singing outside the bedroom window
All of these are plausible, but they are also predictable. I want to keep the reader interested, throwing in unimagined plot points while adding to the conflict within the story. There is also the possibility of using a combination of the above-mentioned scenarios.
I could use this opportunity to highlight Lizzy’s isolationism or Dreven’s insecurity. Or I could start the scene focusing on Lizzy’s dad and his illness. Whatever the path I choose, it needs to grab the attention of the reader and clutch onto it.
ABOUT CYNTHIA BRANDEL
Other than being an awesome mom and a devoted wife, Cynthia is an avid explorer traveling through the galaxy of her mind meeting new and interesting people along the way. Her destination is unknown, but the fun is in the journey.
Cynthia’s first exploration took her to the world of Sanctoria, a place full of magic and mystery. After falling in love and leading an army to war, Cynthia left Sanctoria and continued on her journey.
Currently, Cynthia resides in one of the Revenant cities on Earth. What mysteries will the city hold and where will Cynthia end up? Who knows? But you can guarantee that Cynthia will tell us all about it!