Facing the fear

I’ve reached a point in the second book where I’m no longer sure what’s going to happen, as in, what will happen when my protagonist takes her next step, and I mean “step” quite literally. It’s making me nervous, fearful, even. What if I walk her into this situation and – nothing happens?

I don’t really think that nothing will happen, but I don’t know what will. This is, in every sense of the word, a discovery draft. It’s one of the reasons I need three months to write it. As I said in the last post, I thought about The Swan Harp for nearly twenty years before I started to write it, and while it is a far different story than the original one I imagined, it retains some similarity to it. I knew where I was going, and where my protagonist was going. Now I don’t, not as clearly.

This is when I think about things like where story comes from. Many years ago I had a friend who espoused the multiverse concept long before it became fashionable. She said that if you told a story as fiction, it had happened, would happen or was happening somewhere in the multiverse. There is no fiction, was her point. There’s just history – just maybe not ours. I believe it was Harlan Ellison who wrote about a writer writing the history of the Good Folk as fiction, with theri collaboration. Again, it’s all fact somewhere.

Or maybe not – on alternate days, I wonder if it isn’t all just made up out of whole cloth, which makes me wonder if there’s enough on my bolt, so to speak, to finish this story. Or any story, come to that.

Making Kiar take that next step scares me a bit. Right now I don’t have to do anything about it, because David has a wicked head cold, and I’m doing all the driving for these last few days at work. Come Saturday, he’ll have to drive himself back and forth both, and I’d like him to get a chance to rest and heal now. But Saturday – ah, Saturday I will not be able to put it off any longer. I’ll have to face the fear and take that next step.

Wish me luck!

This entry was posted in Doing the Work, Fumbling towards competence and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Facing the fear

  1. Beth Camp says:

    Listen to your characters. Trust the story. This has taken many years to percolate to this point. Maybe you don’t have to write that perfect next scene, but free write to let Kiar’s voice come out. Play with options for Kiar. Write one scene and then rewrite it with a different twist. Sometimes what we think ‘should’ be next gets in the way of the deeper story. So trust yourself and trust the story. Write. I will hope for good news!

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