Blog Post No. 538
I had to be at the day job early on Sunday. (It was stupidly early). I had been dreading it for weeks as among the rest of the hectic schedule we’d been facing (the day job and myself personally) the very early shift was a beacon of impending exhaustion (for the really incredibly early start and the busyness of the event itself). The funny thing is that I’ve been struggling with where to go in the novella I’m currently writing, and it was while I was getting dressed in the (rather spectacularly early) morning that I was struck with a bolt of inspiration.
In a flash (as I buttoned up my shirt) I knew exactly what to do next. It was like the character I’d been ignoring grabbed me by the lapels and screamed in my face. I’d been so focused on what the protagonist should be doing next that I had nearly forgotten about her. I had put a pin in her actions because it didn’t seem relevant in the moment. I knew she would come back eventually, but that time was at hand.
That always seems to be the way inspiration strikes. It happens when you’re busy doing something else. I’m sure everyone has had that moment in their life. You can bang your head against a wall, trying to find a solution to a problem (no matter the size) and it’s when you’re brain is busy doing something else that you get that jolt. Of course, that jolt doesn’t happen if you’re not already focused on the task at hand.
Really, the best inspiration comes when you’re deep into a project, not when you’re in between. You can get the same moment with the same kind of eureka feeling, but what good is it when you’re busy with other things. Not to say that’s not a good way to start something new, but for writing, most of the people I know who manage to finish books have too many things to do next to be swept up in every little lightning strike.
This time, though, it couldn’t have come at a better moment. For a number of reasons, I’d fallen behind on this current story. I think I should have spent a little more time in the planning phase which is weird for a writer who tends to figure it out as I go. With all the Synthetic Albatross novellas, I’d been thinking about some of the stories for years and by the time I was writing one, I’d already started thinking about the next one. With this story, I was busy trying to edit when someone else had the idea for the anthology. I knew I could come up with something, but I should have given it a little more focus.
It’ll all work out in the end, though. I’ll get the first draft done long before our first deadline, and we don’t expect the book to be out until much later in the year. Plenty of time to fix any dragging parts in the edit. And for a 20 000ish word story, the edits won’t be as monumental at with the Invasion Novel. Anyway, now that inspiration has struck, I better get back to it. The characters tend to get impatient if you ignore them for too long.
2 thoughts on “Moment of Inspiration”
Love those moments of inspiration! Can’t wait to read what you come up with for the novella!
Me too. Nothing gets you over a rough patch like a bolt of lightning.
I hope it’s interesting. It’s definitely going to need some work in the edits.