Meeting again for the first time

Hi there

A day short of one year ago, I wrote this.

Since then, through social media and community forums, I’ve connected with writers from all over the world as well as several from right here in my neck of the woods.

Whether it’s exchanging feedback on a script or offering up a solution to a story problem, or even just meeting for a get-to-know-you chat over lunch or coffee, networking and communicating with other writers can provide a kind of support system that benefits everybody involved.

The other day I met with a guy very busy with several projects, each one offering up a special brand of stress, but he wouldn’t have it any other way. He’s getting to write as well as be involved with the actual production of projects he’s written. Who doesn’t want that?

(An interesting side note – he has severely cut back on his involvement with Done Deal Pro because the negative comments and constant in-fighting became too overwhelming. I don’t blame him and have pretty much done the same thing.)

Try this little experiment to get you started: connect with up to 5 writers a day for one week. Do it through whatever format you want – a blogger you enjoy, Twitter or a respectable forum (Despite the aforementioned issues, DDP is still pretty good). Don’t forget to be polite. Give it a go and see what happens.

Caught in the ripple effect

It starts a chain reaction you just can't stop
A chain reaction you just can’t stop

When I work on pages, I make a point of adhering to the story as it’s written in the outline. There may be some slight alterations here and there, but that’s not an uncommon thing.

At the moment I’m in the middle of a sequence, that, according to the outline, was all planned out. No problems.

Little did I realize that over the course of the pages before this, all of those slight alterations would drastically change the circumstances surrounding my protagonist’s situation in that sequence.

Without knowing it, I had made things much harder not only for him, which is how it should be, but also for myself, which isn’t exactly the greatest of news.  Most of the details now had to be thrown away.

And because I’m such a glutton for punishment, this sequence was slowly becoming way too similar to one from about 20 pages before it. How I didn’t see this while outlining I’ll never know.

So it’s not necessarily back to square one, but I’ve got some work to do. Looking at this from the silver lining perspective, this is actually some pretty good stuff:

-My protagonist now faces bigger challenges, which still advance the story, theme and character development.
-I’m forced to come up with better, more creative ways of depicting how things play out.
-Recognizing and handling the domino effect those earlier changes have made and will make on the rest of the story.

Fortunately, we writers are a hearty lot and not easily deterred.  Time, experience and constant rewrites provide us with the determination and intestinal fortitude to work our way through this sort of thing.