Following the Story String
Well, last week I started a new writing project, a suspense novel called THE FALLING. Only thing is, I can’t tell you what it’s about yet ’cause I don’t know. I have the basic storyline in my head, the driving question: What would happen if animals suddenly acquired human-like intelligence and decided to rebel against mankind? I haven’t worked out all the details yet (or any for that matter) and as I write I can honestly say, I have no idea what’s coming next.
And that’s how I like it.
I’m reading Stephen King’s LISEY’S STORY right now (a 653-page marathon!) and in one part the main character, Lisey, is recalling something her husband, a world-renowned novelist, told her about plotting, or his refusal to do it. He says plotting takes all the fun out of writing. Writing a story is like finding a piece of string in the grass and following it to see where it leads. Sometimes is breaks or doesn’t lead anywhere, but sometimes (oh those sometimes) it leads to a treasure.
That’s writing from the seat of your pants. What a thrill! Finding that string, that first idea or question, and following it to see where it leads. And if your lucky there’ll be a treasure at the end. Hey, I’m off to follow my string. Here’s hoping it doesn’t break. That would be a bummer.