Sunday, July 13, 2014

Not Writer's Block. Something Else

I've got a problem with my writing that I don't usually have to deal with. Uncertainty about which way to take a narrative.

I'm not blocked, I know exactly which way the story is flowing. I know what's going to happen. I know who is going to do what, in general terms, and I have a pretty clear idea about what's going to happen, when, and to whom. My issue is the narrative itself.

For one thing, the dialogue is not flowing well. This is annoying as a toothache. My characters are old friends by this point. I know who they are, and so do they. I know what they are likely to say and do. I think the issue is that several of my main characters, especially the hero and heroine, have hit one of the major conflict points and they are, as one would expect, conflicted. The characters are confused and uncertain and, in a rather bizarre sort of psychosomatic feedback effect, their confusion is having an effect on me as well.

Different possible time lines for the characters are running through my head. The same outcome, but different paths to get there, and different scars being picked up along the way. (This is only in my head, there are no alternate time lines in my story. Just in my confused mind.)The characters are the same, the plot is the same, even most of the scenes are the same. But the details are fluid. It's like Jell-O that won't jell.

Any experienced fiction writer who reads this knows exactly what I am talking about. Most of them could no doubt do a better job of describing it. I think I may jump to another point in the book and let this part rest a while. I'm just spinning my wheels here right now.

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