Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Breakthrough!

So, I've been puttering around, trying to decide which story to write next...for about a month now. I have three ideas that I really like, but I just couldn't motivate myself to sit down and write any of them. So I just kept thinking about them, conceptualizing, plotting, etc., hoping something miraculous would happen. And it did!

Now, you have to understand something: the problem I was having was that, although the characters in each of my ideas were relatively well-formed and motivated, their adversaries were not. Unfortunately, I didn't realize this a month ago, or I could have saved myself much time and anguish. Even so, I did what I always do when I have a writing problem that I can't identify: I started reading. Invariably, if I delve into the kinds of books I love, somewhere along the way the answer comes to me. In this case, it was a book, a computer game, and a blog.

The book was Cornelia Funke's Reckless. I haven't finished it yet, but I already love it. Funny enough, it wasn't anything specific in the book that flipped the switch, but reading always gets my mind and imagination working; thus, the idea came while I was reading, but it wasn't inspired by the book. The game was Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn; this provided the seed for my breakthrough when I realized that one of the enemies I fought earlier was actually the sibling of what I assume to be the ultimate villain in the game. (Again, the events and story of the game aren't what helped me solve my problem, it was the concept of siblings. I'm not plagiarizing, I promise.)

The final piece I owe to fellow blogger Bekah Snow. She's writing a wonderful 6-post guide to querying and synopsizing. I read her first two posts (Goals and Motivations of characters) several weeks ago. While I was reading Reckless, Bekah's posts combined forces with the idea of siblings I'd noted in my game to figuratively punch me in the face (and before you jump to conclusions, no the villain is not the MC's sibling or any other family member).

Thanks to this epiphany, I've done more writing in the last two days than I had in the six weeks prior to that! And I feel GREAT! (thanks, Tony!) And if any of you have looked at my Projects page, I'm working on Dathan the Sorcerer.

Some times I love life way too much! So, have any of you ever had such an Ah-hah moment in your writing? Tell me about it!


  1. Ooh, yay for a new WIP! I'm excited you're working on that one, the little bit that I read had tons of potential. Good luck!

  2. Yay! Congrats! Sometimes stories just need a little time on simmer before you're ready to jump in. Glad you've found yours!

  3. Very exciting, I love breakthrough days. I do the same when I am in need of inspiration. I busy myself with looking at other creative people and projects and it usually inspires new ideas and thoughts.
    Congrats!! Have a fantastic day!

  4. Sa-weet! Congrats on the breakthrough! :D

  5. Awesome on your epiphany! I had one of those earlier in the year and I rewrote my first chapter and it's so much better. Plus it helped make other parts of the story so much better.

    Hope the ideas and storyline keep pouring out for you!

  6. Hey Reece, it's awesome to hear about your breakthrough (and you've thrown some very tantilizing clues about your WIP into your post!). I'm actually riding high right now too, have just redone my query letter and...*gasps*...I love the new one :) Let's just hope my CPs do as well ;)



  7. Congrats on the breakthrough. I love it when things like that happen. I always find that reading something else to get my mind off my own work helps like nothing else can. I hope you can keep up the momentum. Good luck!!

    East for Green Eyes

  8. Congratulations! Breakthroughs like that are so uplifting, aren't they? :)

    (I love Reckless. It's one of my favorite books by Funke!)

  9. I'm jealous... I could really use a breakthrough right now!

    It's nice when you have too many ideas to choose from, isn't it?