Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Given the nature of the subject matter of the new novel (a simple twist on a haunted house) I keep feeling compelled to write in the dark. It just seems apropos.

Well, I’ve extended that idea. I’m trying out something new. I decided to have a little ‘ritual’ each time I set to bring the story to the page. Right now it merely involves a few simple bits such as ceremoniously lighting a candle. Maybe it will develop even more 'steps' as time goes on... I just figure it should have a séance quality to it.

I tried it out last night and will again tonight.  So far it’s got a lot of potential. It lent a spooky aura...not just the glow of candlelight but being aware of the emptiness surrounding me. I really did feel more connected to the characters than before.

However, it’s also true that I found the writing to be slow-going. But not in the sense of not knowing what should be there nor even having trouble scribbling to the page. Rather I kept belaboring over the choice way of putting it down. That’s happened to me before, but, this time in reverse.  Unlike before, it hadn’t been me who objected to the words I'd write. I thought them just fine.  But my guys in the story didn’t seem to be very appreciative. So I’d re-craft what I had (at one point realizing an unintentional double entendre that HAD to be disposed of since there are no romantic feelings between the two of them) and wait until they approved. These guys seem to be giving me great impressions of how they feel rather than spouting out the story bits. Not that they aren’t forthcoming with what’s happening in their tale, they are very much so, even to the point of surprising me already. But with say, Jeremy, well, he wouldn’t stop rambling and I had to write like a madman to keep up with him. These two are wading in each moment, making sure I totally grok what they’re experiencing (even if it doesn’t appear directly onto the page) and hence I’m trying to carefully distill the essence into those ‘choice’ words.  Instead of the slowness frustrating me, I reveled in it - absorbing the atmosphere.

It’s so remarkable... how each book develops differently.

As for the music playlist I compiled before... it’s working pretty well. I might have to tweak it a bit. But then, I haven’t gotten through all of the songs on it yet either.

And so my ‘ritual’ will continue... and I certainly hope it produces great results. (Well, duh. ;] )

Of course, I won’t be able to utilize the ritual every single time. For I don’t plan on writing solely at home in the dark of night. I often bring my work with me.  If I’m in a café or by the lake... well, no candles can be lit. But whenever I write at home, I’ll fire up the steps to composing. It will be interesting to see if I can notice a distinct difference or not.

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