Stagnation Breeds Creation

And it was all going so well. Too well. A steady stream of words that seemed to never end. And I was good with that.  Or at least I thought I was. Then I had to go and do something stupid like experiment. I ask myself, “why would you do something crazy? You had the story! It was there!” I guess it is more an issue of practice what I preach. I am a firm believer that changing a story up, killing your hero, making a lovable villain, is important. If we don’t add a little something new here and there our stories will stagnate. That brings me to my current predicament. This is to be book 4 of the Treasure Hunter Series. Somewhere in the mix however, I lost the treasure part. I got caught up in character and soon found myself with a weak plot. Seriously, how can I write a book about treasure, if no one finds any treasure?

The down side to this scenario is that I have just opened a can of creativity and started eating it up. I am currently writing less story, and writing more tangents. Imagine, if you will, walking down a path. This is a familiar path. You have Been on it many times. You know where it begins, and you know where it ends. Then one day you find that the path has changed. There are now 5 different paths you can choose, each one of them taking you somewhere different. Do you take the one that is familiar? Do you choose a new one and see where it leads?

In creative writing we know where the story begins, and we generally have an idea of where it will end. Even though we may divert from the path every now and again, we always come out at the end. Can it bog down your writing process? Sure can. Should you let it? Yes, so long as your detour is short and you get back on track when you’re done exploring. You never want to stray so far that you lose yourself amidst thoughts of making it better. This is fiction we’re creating. It’s okay to have a look around and test the waters, but not at the expense of your story.

As for me, the journey continues much the same. I will keep exploring new avenues, but sooner, rather than later, I will be back behind the wheel and driving the story forward.

D.B. Flint