Thursday, 29 November 2007
Friday, 23 November 2007
Thursday, 15 November 2007
"I never want to see anyone, and I never want to go anywhere or do anything. I just want to write." (P.G.Wodehouse)
I'll return to my blog next week but for a few days I have to focus on Cut Short. There are revisions in the pipeline. The eagle-eyed among you may notice a change from the cover design here and the final cover on the book, behind which lies a story in itself.
In short, I've received THE dreaded letter from my editor, and I have to do some WORK on my MS. Enough of all this writing for fun, it's time to sort my MS out. I promise to blog all about it when I recover from my insane writing fest... if I recover. It's a ... sorry, no time to think of a word ... got to crack on or crack up (or both).
Wednesday, 14 November 2007
Friday, 9 November 2007
Thursday, 8 November 2007
I write murder stories that seem to develop in one of two ways. I don't start at the beginning of a story and work chronologically (or any sort of logically) through to the end but begin by writing the exciting, dramatic scenes first. They're the most fun! Then I go back and fill in everything else, like plot and characters.
I may start writing with a murder scene. This raises questions. Who was the victim? Why was this person killed? Who was the killer? The story spins off from there.
Alternatively, I might begin with a discovery. A body is found. Who found it? Who was the victim? Why were they killed? Who was the killer? And I'm away.
It becomes a question of problem solving, like a kind of jigsaw to fit characters, motivation and opportunity together into a plausible story. I love the challenge of solving the difficulties this raises and am in the middle of one right now. A body has been found in an unlikely place. How did it get there? who is it? why? - I'm stumped for a plausible plot line, and having enormous fun trying to work out something good.
I love the idea that I need never ever be bored again, for the rest of my life, because there's always some problem to resolve.
So if you see someone with a faraway, slightly deranged look in their eyes, muttering to themselves, it could be me, working out how the body got there..... Best not say hello, it might be someone else who is demented, talking to themselves and gazing wildly round not seeing what's in front of them, lost in another world altogether.
I'd hate to have to do this to a deadline! Oh, and it beats doing crosswords. I was never any good at them anyway.
Wednesday, 7 November 2007
Casting about for an idea, paradoxically gives me an idea, because I've been wondering l about this very subject lately: where do ideas come from? I mean the ideas that spark creative endeavour. Did Shakespeare have any problem, with his licence to use existing plots? We insist on originality in art. Encouraged by a tireless media assault to aspire to size zero figures, perfect teeth, etc. why should we yearn to be clones outwardly yet insist on originality in art? Is art the last refuge of the individual in our society?
I'll focus on characters. My publisher advised me to keep reading, for ideas, but I find my inspiration in life. No offence to the human race intended, but I can't sit long in any cafe, stand in a station, or walk along the street, before I realise that the peculiar characters I create as a writer, my odd little works of fiction, are no stranger than many real people. Life is bursting with possibilities.
Sometimes a character just pops into my head or develops on the page in front of me without intention on my part. I suppose I've had the idea unconsciously working iself out for a while, but it seems to just appear from nowhere, ready formed.
So my question this week is this: where do ideas come from? I wonder where other people find theirs .