Road Blocks (and an apology)

Please not that this post was suppose to go up yesterday, and I have NO IDEA what sort of technical glitch caused it to be otherwise. Please make sure you scroll down to see our lovely post that was ACTUALLY scheduled for today.

That said, here WAS my post on roadblocks, though perhaps one on unexpected glitches would be more appropriate.

So, I get lost quite a lot. I mean this literally, as in I get lost walking, I get REALLY lost driving, and like everyone else, I get lost writing. Often I will run up against a dead end in my work. Sometimes, I can see what’s beyond it. Occasionally, I think I know where I need to go, even if I can’t quite see it yet. What often happens though, is that if I try to push on – to get around the road block and get un-lost in a hurry – I end up making things worse. I wind up in a bad neighborhood, metaphorically speaking.

When you hit those moments in your work that throw your for a loop – the unexpected plot hole, the bit of research that makes something you created impossible – the thing you most want to avoid is making it worse. If you know what needs to happen, great, press on! But by all means, if you can’t quite see the way, take the time you need to figure it out. Crappy first drafts are supposed to be crappy, but I, personally, don’t believe in writing yourself into a corner if you can avoid it. Take the rest of the day off writing when you’re faced with a road block. Take a walk. (Just don’t get lost.) And then, when your own personal GPS has a plan for getting around whatever snafu you’ve come across, then by all means, proceed!

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5 thoughts on “Road Blocks (and an apology)

  1. Great advice–unfortunately, also timely. (Waaaahh!) I’ve taken a week off to clean out the cellar for incoming contractors, so here’s hoping. It’s worth noting that when I’ve gotten lost while driving or walking I’ve generally discovered something very cool–if I take the time to explore new paths in a story, it always pays off.

  2. The joys of pantsing are overrated, aren’t they? I agree sometimes setting the story aside for a while can help you figure out where the story really needs to go.

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