D.V. Sheppard

The web-log of a duck-herding author.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

My Internal Conflict with External Conflict (IWSG)

It - is - ALIVE! My cord came in the mail and my laptop is back in action! Coincidentally - just in time for my Husby's computer to die. Funny how that happens. With the rebirth of my dear computer eNwY, comes the rebirth of my writing. I was quite excited about this, and then I realized that there was a reason I hadn't been writing a lot before my computer went on hiatus.

You see, my current WIP is a little... well... nutritionally deficient. Okay, okay, the truth is, I do a pretty shoddy job at putting plots together. You see, I'm all about the relationships. The friendship, the romance, the hatred. I'm also huge into the internal conflict. These are the things that I LIKE to write. However, I like to READ these things wrapped up in a great story of external conflict. Therefore, I am only willing to write a story about the former by including the latter. I'm just not so smooth with the latter.

Herein creates my predicament. I've been writing, and I like what I've been writing, but now that I've solidified that my one book needed to be two, I realized that book one didn't really have a good plot arc. Book two would stand alone just fine. I'm not writing book two right now, though, so I came to grips with the fact that I really did need to put the work in for numero uno. Now, here I go, working to get my Husby to sit down and be a sounding board for me. He's wonderful like that. With his help, I'll fill in the gaps and re-fall-in-love with my NEW and IMPROVED story.

While this in and of itself is obviously not a source of insecurity, it made me thing about something that sort of made my eyes go wide and blank, and my mouth tighten up (I want to draw a picture of what I need, but I haven't yet convinced my Husby of just how much I'd like him to get me an art program that I can use his drawing tablet with). I wondered in an ominous whisper, "Is this how it will always be? Will I have to dive into a story just to find that I have to pull out and re-align it, and fill in and fix plot lines EVERY time I write a book?" I'm not jumping to conclusions. This is what happened to my last book, which turned into a set a aside project so I could write this book. I don't want that repeated.

(This is my brain on plot)
I think my key weak spots are these: (1) that my outlines are not specific enough, and (2) well, I don't really like doing the work to think up plots based on external conflicts! I wonder if I'm the only one out there with this problem (please speak up if you can attest that I am not - I'm not a loner by choice). I also wonder how to strengthen these weaknesses. Any suggestions? Do plots just come to you, or do you get inspiration from outside sources? Do you make outlines that clearly direct your writing? Does it help? Any suggestions on just how to go about doing that?                                              

Share your 2 bit with me!


Just when I think my writing is getting better, I discover some new layer I need to work on. Ugh. Will it ever end! LOL Great post. :)

IWSG #179 (At least until Alex culls the list again. :P)
I'm working on the third book of my series now, so the characters are set and it's the plot I focus on. But it was challenging with the first book, because I completely scrapped the first story, kept the characters and conflict, and then had to write a whole new story.
And yes, Melissa is right - I am really trying to stay on top of the list. Need to hire some elves to help though.
Nooo, not one suggestion. Plot is my nemesis, but did I hear about elves? I could use a plot elf.
I find I either have a good chapter that focuses on plot, or I have a good chapter that focuses on relationships/character building...now just how to intwine those elements. If you figure out the secret, let me know! Great post! I loved that you called your WIP nutritionally deficient!

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