Does your brain just keep spewing meaningless scenes of your characters doing things that aren't even meant for the plot. It sure is hard to keep a focus on things once you get slightly off track.
(The ramble section) I'm so frustrated with my characters. Always wandering off to do their own things. Inserting themselves into other genres. I can always make more characters but they are just like dead puppets and can never be comparable.
Why can't I provide a good enough story for them that they always run away and my motivation dies. Balancing subtly but still keeping the depth is so hard. Writing a simple and quick story? I just doesn't satisfy and it is such waste for the characters that is created for way more.
I retreated back out to read the stories and listen to the music that I admire. Post of commenters singing their praises of the attention to detail, the amazing grand scheme of things that is at play, leaving them speculating and craving for more. The complexity of the art but yet it's presentation is just so simple. I wonder if they were once in the same spot as me but manage to find their light. Or are we just different from each other and they just create things on the fly and tie them up nicely.
I fail as a writer to give my characters a clear and interesting environment to thrive on. A plot to keep my readers engage. And a story that I can be happy with.
Post by ScienceGirl on Apr 16, 2021 8:17:08 GMT -6
Keep all those wanderings! Just keep them in a different file/folder than your story. They help you know and understand your character better and you never know when one of those snippets will come in useful for a story.
If you're talking in terms of a short story, you probably just need to narrow your focus and hone in on more details. Enrich your environment with character interaction with the setting. You anchor them to the setting by placing interesting objects in the scene to keep them there.
If it's a longer story, wander away. Just know that's not the official story.
I like to write with two files. One is scarily organized into chapter 1 act 1 paragraph 1... LOL ok maybe not that bad but it follows my "strict" timeline. My other file is permissible freewriting and it's a complete mess. If I want to find something useful, a lot of times I have to search for keywords to find it.
Also, take comfort in the fact that drawing your simple plot out into a longer story is sometimes easier if there are a few "plot asides." Think of the hero's journey, for example. They have to get lost along the way. It would be a terribly boring story if they just went straight from point A to point B.
And yes, all writers hit that spot. Even the good ones do. My favorite author is David Baldacci. I've heard that when he gets stumped and needs to add 10000 words he will just add in a car chase or something. People are always interested in a good car chase LOL.
Good luck to you! Why don't you try the 200-word forum and get feedback on some small pieces and maybe we can help with keeping your characters anchored.
Oh. My first draft was wander-tastic. They kind of adhered to the main plot but there were also a lot of side quests and conversations that added NOTHING to the overall story. They did highlight what I needed to hone within each character. I realized I was character building on the fly because I really hadn't made my characters solidly real. Some were just there to provide influence on my MC, some were there for a little spice, but they weren't fully realized individuals. So I went back and honed them. Now they stay on course most of the time. If I find myself wandering it's usually because I don't really know my characters and they don't know themselves and they must wander in order to discover who they are.
Post by ScintillaMyntan on Apr 16, 2021 17:36:34 GMT -6
I actually ran into the opposite question the one time I tried to write a longer form. How much side stuff do we need?
In my case, everything I was writing about was directly related to the plot. It felt like the plot was advancing too quickly or the story was too single-mindedly focused on the plot. But the story is about the plot, after all. And I thought my characters were revealed well enough through their relation to the plot and didn't need separate character-building scenes.
It was partly because of the nature of the plot, partly my usual discomfort with detailing characters' lives — like, who am I as a sheltered and inexperienced person to detail the life histories of more 'normal' characters who are not sheltered and inexperienced like me? — and partly not liking that protagonist, which I've since fixed.
pelwrath: Thanks Jib, I started with about 2500 words of notes, created a new opening and have added to that story arc.
May 2, 2021 19:35:00 GMT -6
whaleworkforfood: I'm shocked, SHOCKED, by this Kit Kat slander xD xD There's nothing better than snapping a Kit Kat. There's nothing better than the smooth chocolatey-ness of a Kit Kat.
May 3, 2021 7:19:07 GMT -6
whaleworkforfood: My only complaint is they've switched the packaging from that paper/foil that you cut in the middle with your nail, into this horrendous plastic
May 3, 2021 7:20:01 GMT -6
Alatariel: Oh I remember the foil. Good times.
May 3, 2021 10:57:50 GMT -6
Caulder Melhaire: It's almost as bad as when they removed the Lime skittles and replaced it with green apple. Blech!
May 3, 2021 11:00:54 GMT -6
Alatariel: I totally remember biting into a green skittle right after they changed it and being SO confused. Had all my memories of lime been wrong? Had they always been apple? Skittles straight up gaslighting us.
May 3, 2021 13:57:01 GMT -6
Alatariel: Ugh, my brain doesn't want to write today.
May 3, 2021 14:25:55 GMT -6
pelwrath: Hello everyone
May 3, 2021 17:28:38 GMT -6
whaleworkforfood: omg! the apple skittles are the worst!
May 4, 2021 7:45:21 GMT -6
RAVENEYE: agreed! who decided on that genius idea???
May 4, 2021 10:51:06 GMT -6
RAVENEYE: Congrats to the winners of our POETRY CONTEST!!! Check out the ANNOUNCEMENT to see who won what.
May 4, 2021 11:35:33 GMT -6
ScintillaMyntan: Do we get to know who wrote what?
May 4, 2021 12:36:36 GMT -6
RAVENEYE: Oh crap, I forgot to edit that. Thanks, Scintilla!
May 4, 2021 12:37:58 GMT -6
RAVENEYE: there we go, sheesh
May 4, 2021 12:41:15 GMT -6
Jib: Cognrats to the winners!!
May 4, 2021 13:53:28 GMT -6
pelwrath: Well deserved congrats to the winners of the poetry contest. Cream does rise to the top and that contest was an excellent example.
May 4, 2021 14:45:51 GMT -6
pelwrath: Good evening everyone
May 4, 2021 20:44:37 GMT -6
Alatariel: More ppl need to do the 100 Word Weekly Challenge! Go go! It closes...end of day tomorrow I believe?
May 7, 2021 17:57:20 GMT -6
Jib: Aww, I think I might check it out next week. Don't think I'll have a chance to write things today!
May 8, 2021 17:52:31 GMT -6