Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Skipping Ahead...

Normally I'm a very linear writer. There are occasionally times where I get hit with a scene that occurs later on in the novel or series I'm working on, and I'll jot them down when those hit, but for the most part I write things in the sequence that they happen. Chapter one is followed by chapter two and chapter three, and so on and so forth. I've toyed with the idea of skipping ahead when I reach troubling chapters, but as soon as I try it, it just does not work out.

There are many posts lamenting this on my blog. Many many posts.

Until now.

Despite all the helpful advice my fellow WIPpeteers gave me last week, chapter 8 is proving to be problematic. I can see how it's supposed to play out in my head so clearly, but it just refuses to cooperate when it's time to put all that action on paper.

However, in chapter 9, we hop back to Mattie's point of view and a lot of that is already written out. I just have to copy it over from the previous draft and tweak things here and there.

On a whim, I decided to see if I could jump ahead to chapter 9. I knew it probably wouldn't work, because, again, I'm a linear sort of person, so I went in expecting to fail. Gnashing teeth, ripping out hair, moaning about my writers block to my Husband while he nods and pretends he understands what I'm talking about, crying myself to sleep, fail.

To my complete and utter surprise, things are rolling along rather smoothly. I think it's because, even though they're taking place in the same world and at the same time, Liam's and Mattie's stories are separate story lines right now. Some of the events do coincide, but they aren't dependent on each other. Later on they become entwined, so I imagine at that point I won't be able to do this skipping ahead thing any longer.

But for right now, I'm enjoying it.

ROW 80 Goals

I haven't kept up with my 1,000 words a day this past week. A friend we knew from Haunt passed away over the weekend. He was a great guy, a really great guy, and his presence at Knott's will be sorely missed. In addition to that my boss at work is out sick, so my co-worker and I are running around trying to keep the place from burning down while she's gone.

I did get pictures taken of two new products to add to my etsy store. They require a few more measurements than the Belly Dance bodices though, so I need to create a diagram for that before I can post them.

WIPpet Wednesday!

Since today's date is 8/14/13, I'm going to share five lines from chapter 9 of TUO. 1 plus 4 for the date equals 5. I know that's ridiculously simple WIPpet math, but I couldn't share anything more without giving anything away. Though, I have a sneaking suspicion that you, my dear readers and fellow WIPpeteers, may hate me for this bit...

“Mattie, please believe us, we would never put you in any sort of danger – and not just because of the promise…” Talesin’s tone was pleading.
“Who did you make this promise to anyways?” She cut him off.
The brothers shared a look.
“It doesn’t matter,” said one.
“It’s in the past,” said the other.

To check out more ROW 80 updates, click here, to see more WIPpet Wednesday treats, click here!


  1. Why should we hate you for that piece? I think it's cool. Leaves a lot to the imagination, but that's fine... WIPpets aren't supposed to be the whole of the story, Christina.

    It's interesting reading about different writing styles. I can't do anything linearly. It messes with my head.

    That said, it could be as much a block as the fact that you are grieving... Loss makes the words so much harder to bring forth. Maybe you'll find Liam's thread comes to you easier after you've had a chance to rest your soul some too.

    1. I know they're not - but I've had some comments in the past giving me a hard time about leaving people hanging. This bit had just enough mystery going on in it, and it was so short, that I kinda expected to get those same comments again ;)

      BTW - I really enjoyed your chapter on Collaborating Chaos. That put a very interesting spin on things!

  2. I'm a linear writer as well. I've tried skipping ahead before, and just can't. Even though I plot the story out, it's like I'm afraid of missing something in between. If that makes sense(it did in my head). So sorry to hear about your friend.

    very interesting excerpt. Leaves me wanting to know more about this promise.

    1. I sometimes worry that I might miss something that the character will reveal. And then I'll have to go back and rewrite everything.

      Thank you - this loss was definitely a shock. Something like this always is, but when they're so young and appear to be in relatively good health... :(

  3. I love to be teased - at least, with intriguing snippets I'm left to toy with in my own fertile mind.

    I am a paradoxical writer. I tend to write drafts linearly (umm, is that a word? Who cares? it's $;44 and I've been doing writery stuff all night).

    But many of my drafts grow from plot tribbles that start multiplying, and so I write them in notebooks until I get stuck or bored.

    It can take years before they grow into something cohesive. Some never do.

    I'm writing two intertwining series with multiple volumes, and, although I write each WIP in linear order, I am writing the books out of series sequence. It wasn't intentional (it took a long time to see that they could all fit together this way), but I like it, because, this way, they tend to feed each other, and themes stay fresh in my mind to use elsewhere, so they're more cohesive than they might have been.

    May I start the chorus of "More! More!" now?

    1. Hehehehehe, thank you :)

      I'm the same way with ideas, I get little plot bunnies here and there. Sometimes they mature. Sometimes they just sit there.

  4. I wrote one novel skipping all around, and it was SO hard to get the flow right in the second draft. I vowed never to do that again. But I can see how jumping here and there would help. (I have successfully written just the climax scene and then gone back and built toward it.) I'm glad that your experiment worked out for you!

    Have a great next week! Happy writing!

    1. I worry about that, messing up the sound or feel of the book by jumping around, but since it's only this one time with the one chapter, I think I should be fine.