I was in my Dante lecture, listening to my professor recite the first Canto of the Inferno. Her voice has a gentle italian accent and if you let your mind drift even a little the soft melodic sounds of her words lose their meaning and become a thin stream of calming sounds.
It was at this point that an explosion of ideas burst forth in my head! I felt like all the ideas that had been stranded at the edges of my mind for the past few years just came rushing into my consciousness and started screaming, “PAY ATTENTION TO ME!” I sat there, staring at my professor and my mind was reeling with mountains of ideas. I started scribbling these ideas down in the margins of my notebook. I even flipped to the back and wrote a few lines of dialogue.
The writer’s block that had sparked my massive re-write/revision suddenly melted away to reveal all these wonderful things. By the end of class I was itching to get home and start the clickity-clack of my keyboard until I had blisters on my fingers. But I had an appointment after class, which I had just enough time to change for when I got home, so the typing had to wait.
While I still need to write the main plot progression for Dawning of the Sun down, I made a lot of progress idea-wise. I discovered a world of new Gods and Goddesses and their origin myths. I found my Underworld, its purpose, and unearthed a few mysteries about the afterlife. I discovered some things about my characters that they had been hiding from me, including their shameful pasts. But, best of all, I figured out that I’m writing a trilogy. It was always my intention to find a way to keep Sol’s story going. I had originally intended for her to discovered her heritage and meet her family in the imaginary second book. I was so very wrong. That’s part of Dawning of the Sun. Sol will have far greater challenges to deal with in the second book, because they wont be her own.
I’m overwhelmed with all the ideas that are flooding my insides. It’s like I’m going to burst! I haven’t had anything like this happen in a very long time. But what I’m most grateful for is my ability to make connections. Everything I’ve already written or thought I might write play into the new ideas, they make them richer. Everything is connected.
I’ve been really down on myself the last few weeks, as some of my friends and family have pointed out. I was losing faith in my abilities, not just in writing but school and my future. This day couldn’t have come at a better time. While, to do all this I have once again neglected my studies, I now have a renewed passion for finishing my degree. When I do, I can put that diploma to good use: funding my writing. I’ve decided that I don’t care what day job is going to be anymore. As long as when I’m done for the day I still have energy to write, I’ll be happy. I had this romantic notion that I would love my day job and write in my off hours. Silly me. I want to make up stories. I want to write them down. I want to share them with others. That’s my big dream now. It’s no longer second to a fancy career.
The Idea Diary
interlude 3: Tentative first lines of my new manuscript
Friday Tips for Writers
Outlining? What’s that?