• Mark Paterson

Getting lost in translation... The hardest part of writing

It's NaNoWriMo this month and that got me thinking a lot about people's methods of writing.

There is always a nerve-wracking moment when I sit down at my laptop with blank document open waiting for me to type out the words that have been flitting through my head for days, weeks or even months. I kind of wish I could be one of those writers who sits down and plans it all out and has her characters mapped out before even sitting down but unfortunately it just doesn't seem to work for me.

Instead, my stories and characters seem to evolve organically chapter by chapter and this means that sometimes what happens in my head doesn't actually translate onto my screen. A prime example of this was my character Alex in my latest novel, Tied to You. Originally I had planned his character to be quite harsh and domineering, but once I sat down and wrote the first couple of chapters I realised that I wouldn't be able to sustain the level of aggression I had originally planned in relation to Olivia and instead he took on a more chilled out, surfer-boy-slash-CEO, demeanour.

So while I try to have a rough plot outlined in my head, I find that anything more than that just doesn't work for me. Instead I try to plan scene by scene, thinking them through before committing them to paper, to see where the story takes me. Sometimes it works out just as planned and other times it takes me somewhere completely unexpected…and that is not always a bad thing.

#nanowrimo #writingmethods

Woman typing on computer

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