Thursday, September 16, 2010

So this is what a writer does all day....

Thinking about characters, sprawled on my bed under a quilt, rain pummelling the roof. Tea and cookies on the nighttable. The dog is asleep in the bathroom having given up all hope of a walk. I've spent the morning thinking about the main character in the story I'm working on. Thinking about his name, what he looks like, what he wants and why he wants it. I didn't expect the main character to be a guy, so this is all news to me. I thought this story was about a young woman, but here he is, impossible to ignore.

He came to me when I was walking the dog earlier this week. The dog and I walk the trails behind my house to a nearby lake. At the very end of a dirt road is a cottage with a weather-beaten dock. No one is ever at the cottage so the dog and I have adopted the dock as our own personal goofing off space. It's a lonely spot. Silent, except for the wind and birds and the lake lapping the shore. Very peaceful. It was in a moment of not thinking, planning, plotting, that this character came along. A more intriguing, complex character than I could have devised on my own, bringing with him a more intricate and dangerous plotline.

My little critique group starts up again October 1st so I have to have the first 25 pages ready. I'm glad I didn't rush into what I thought I was going to write. Sometimes it pays to procrastinate.

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