Diary of an Ecstatic Problem Creator

Another early Sunday morning. Another 2,000 words.

I’ve been jumping all over the place this morning, from reading for my English class to writing for fun (because for some reason, I just make time to do that on occasion) straight to analyzing a diet history and planning a mod nutrition counseling session …. and now I’m sitting on my butt writing again (this post) before sprinting over to the rec center when it opens at noon. Oh, and eating about half a box of granola bars. Yep.

Unfortunately, in those 2,000 words I cranked out earlier, Callie and Austin have not gotten any closer to ending their “thing” (whatever it is – I don’t think either of them are quite sure), and Ben and Callie have yet to settle their daily disputes over nothing. In fact, Callie informed me as I typed, Ben is now sleeping on the couch and she’s afraid to go home. So go figure.

Callie and Ashley did have a close run-in, however, which was silent and awkward and full of all sorts of tension. Lovely.

I’m not writing fantasy, and the thing with realistic fiction is that you can’t just have someone jump out of a window when there’s a knock at the door (well, you could, but if you like that character, that’s probably not the best option for your story). So when Callie’s thoughts were interrupted by a knock, and Austin went to answer it, I realized mid-sentence that Becky, one of my favorite characters, was about to find out about their secret. And I really did not want that to happen. So I thought: should she hide under the desk? No, she’s a grown woman, about to get her Ph.D., much more mature than that. Besides, Austin is about to move offices and this one is therefore mostly empty. Now what? Hide behind the door? Forget logic and jump out the window despite potential (fatal) consequences?

Well, since Callie is one of the narrators, she can’t die. When I hit 17,000, Becky was about to approach Callie about what she’d walked into. So tomorrow will be an entertaining writing spree.

I’m probably not doing anything other than confusing you by talking about a book you’ll never read, instead of making you want to read a book that has an x percent chance of getting published in the next 10 years. So I’ll lay off the specifics. Back to my original point – realistic occurrences. In my books, they happen on every page. People fight, people cry (probably more than they should) and oh, there are happy moments too. I’m not that mean to my characters.

It’s all about finding that balance between realistic and entertaining. Sometimes life is boring. We don’t need to summarize someone’s entire morning routine unless it’s about to be permanently disrupted as part of a significant plot point; we shouldn’t have to feel like we have to describe a couple’s typical means of expressing their affection for one another unless it’s the consistent pattern of the relationship that’s causing it to crumble.

Here’s what I hope to resolve before November 30: (1) Ben and Callie’s misunderstanding of each others’ grief, (2) Ashley and (name yet to be determined)’s relationship, (3) Austin and Callie’s understanding that Ashley is a catalyst in their relationship but that the relationship does not have to be (shouldn’t be) a romantic one, and (4) some sort of confrontation between Ashley and Callie in the present, which will be problematic, because the present only covers one day in this novel, and so far in the present Callie is not ready to visit Ashley.

So what needs to happen before all these resolutions occur?

More writing. Duh.

Love&hugs, Meg<3

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