Most days I open the laptop, start a new document, and just start writing. This is part of training for me. If I think about it too hard or make a plan for what I’ll write, it feels forced. And while I imagine that kind of discipline to be quite helpful if I were actually writing a novel, for this warm up, it doesn’t seem the best approach. A free flow of ideas and words is what I need to get started. In time, I anticipate being more structured, having an outline, etc.
Thank you to those who provided feedback on the start of my short story in yesterday’s post. One of you replied in the comments, others on Facebook, and my most trusted friend as well as my husband responded via text. All shared insights that have me thinking and revising in my head. While my husband liked the idea of starting the story in the middle of the action, others wanted to know more about the couple before the plot changed. And I had the same nagging thought that there should be something about them that makes us care what happens next. We don’t have to like them necessarily, but we have to be intrigued enough to want to see what happens after they are sucked in.
Let’s try this again with a few tweaks. For a start, I need to change the female character’s name. I don’t know why I originally chose Elizabeth and Alan. They literally just came to me as I was typing, so I wrote them. I have no special feelings about those names. But then my husband referred to the female character as Liz. Oh dear. Anyone who knows our family will know that’s not a name I wish to attach to an endearing character, or really any character. Hence forth the female will be known as Amy. Again, no thought to the name; it just came to me as I paused in writing, raised my tea cup and took a drink.
Without further preamble, here’s my rewrite…