Friday, July 25, 2008

So Close I Can Taste It

I haven't been blogging - not for nothing to say but the time issue again. My parents are here which is bliss. My house is now sorted and the kids are sorted. Life is good but time keeps disappearing. DH arrives today :-)

Yesterday I woke at 4:30 and couldn't fall asleep again so I crept downstairs and began revision work. I had spent the six hours the previous day while the car was being serviced this week. I sat at the kids table in the local vauxhall garage with a printout of A Cornish House and Donald Maass's Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook. I began at page one and worked through his chapters and the connections in my head started flying. My poor heroine is having more and more dumped on her but best of all - it all fits.

This leads me to the marathon revision day yesterday. So I revised from five am to six pm yet I didn't reach that crucial stage where these new key scenes need to go. I know what I have to write and I now know where they need to fit in the story but truth be told I might just be a little bit afraid to write them. Why you ask? Well, they will hurt Maddie and me. I will have to pull on all those dark corners of pain that we shove away to make these scenes work and I'm just not sure if I can do them justice.

I have wrestled this story from Serena's (the bolshy teen) grip and placed it back with Maddie but it has come at a huge emotional cost for her. I keep saying what else can I throw at her? So now I sit on the edge of writing some pretty painful stuff.......DH keeps saying as I mention what else is going to happen to her - and this is going to have a happy ending, it sounds more like a slash your wrist job. But Maddie will have her happy ending, I promise, it's just that both she and I will have worked bl**dy hard for it.

Have you had any scenes that it took all your reserve to write because you knew how much it would cost your hero/heroine?

Finally some links - over on C. S. Harris's blog there is a great post on lessons learned.
And finally from d.o.t's blog I found this blog How Publishing Really Works which carries much worth while info......


Lisa said...

Yes! I've delayed writing certain scenes to make sure I'm up to it. Dragging my character into the abyss means I have to go there with her and it's draining!

I've got the Maass workbook -- I'm saving it until I can get to the end of a first draft. I keep hearing very good things about it. Sounds like you're really having some breakthroughs. Congratulations!

Jessica Raymond said...

((Hugs)) Liz -- you're doing so well :)

The only part of writing I can think of that wrung it out of me was the scene where Sam and Beth get trapped in the attic in HAUNTED HEARTS. I wrote it all in one long sitting after dinner one night, all the way past midnight, and when I went back to re-read it (with my fingers and shoulders aching from hunching over the laptop), I cried because all the emotion I'd felt while writing it had poured into the words so completely. That's definitely one of my favourite bits :)

Thanks for the link to the publishing blog; I had a quick skim over the posts (not much time this morning) and it looks very informative.

Michelle Styles said...

1. I hate bleeding on the page and have an anoying tenendency to leave the full horror until the revisions. I must get better.

2. Make sure you use the full emotional colour wheel.Shadows are darkest at mid-day, so make sure there are so light moments.

3. Maass is brilliant.

Flowerpot said...

I'm reading the Maas book too! It's incredibly helpful I find.

How Publishing Really Works said...

I know all about writing those difficult scenes: it's torture to do it, but if I'm dreading writing something and put it off, it hangs around me like smoke and the writing gets harder with each day that passes--almost as if it's got stale while I waited. Sometimes I don't know why I do it!

Thanks for the nice words about my blog, by the way! It's good to know that I'm appreciated. Sometimes I wonder (especially when I get hate-mail about the things that I've written).


Steve Malley said...

Getting uncomfortable is usually a good sign. Write your way in to those scary places. You'll be glad you did.

liz fenwick said...

Lisa, the workbook is like gold. I have used twice now and each time I gain something else.

Jess, I remember that scene!

Michelle, as always, you hit me with the right advice at the right time. I am making sure there is some light around all the emotional

Flowerpot, I don't know whether Maass will help me break out but I am sure my story is better for apply some of the exercises :-)

How - love the image of it going stale :-) A pleasure to give a plug to a good blog.

Steve you are right. I have worked myself slowly into each new scene by expanding the scene before (which I amy cut out when I revise through) but it made the plunge into the intense emotion easy to build up to. Also with what Michelle said above above making sure there is enough light around so that the full effect of the emotion is felt.

Annie Bright said...

Hi Liz

Just finding my way around blogland and came across your blog. I think we have the same dream : -) So, just wanted to say good luck. :-))


Kate.Kingsley said...

Oh yes, I know exactly what you mean ~ some sections of my WIP draw on things that have happened to me or others close to me, and i KNOW there's some stuff that needs writing that I haven't had the nerve to tackle yet.

Sounds like the revisions are cracking along though ~ well done!!

Zinnia Cyclamen said...

Yes, and it's really hard. Thanks for the links, the HPRW blog looks really interesting (hate mail? how horrible - sending sympathy for that).