Friday, July 17, 2009


What I'm Listening To: Alexander Rybak - Dolphin

What I'm Doing: Writing - fanfics, admittedly, but better than nothing.

Although this new-found habit of mine will undoubtedly stand me in good stead while writing and revising, at the moment it's new enough to be a nuisance.


I finished a particularly well-written fic, and suddenly wanted to write more of my own. I'd left off with this:

Without waiting for a response, he ducked out of the other's bedroom and made himself busy in the kitchen.

Looking at it, I was thinking, "he's making tea. What does one do when you make tea in an unfamiliar flat?"

Poke through all the cabinets, of course. I added:

Deliberately, he let the cupboards crash closed and the mugs clink onto the countertops,

and then stopped there and stared at it.

Why is he making a ton of noise? He's afraid that his partner is going to kill him and stash his body somewhere, so why is he making enough noise to cover up the sounds of someone sneaking up behind him?

It drew me up short for a moment, and I found myself unable to continue until I'd answered the question. He's afraid. This satisfied my inner critic, and I continued the paragraph as:

Deliberately, he let the cupboards crash closed and the mugs clink onto the countertops, releasing the nervous tension he'd been feeling since arriving on the other man's doorstep.

Will this make me a better writer? Indubitably. Will it irritate the hell out of me, stopping myself every few paragraphs to make sure I'm explaining it to my own satisfaction? It's inevitable.


  1. It's unusual that you're asking and answering the questions as you go along, rather than planning beforehand.

    Anyway, the story starts well and seems interesting, especially the mysterious "other guy". :)

  2. It's fun to see another writer's process. I have to sit and think everything out beforehand, whereas another writer with the same starting point as me may come out with an entirely different scene/chapter/novel entirely. It's amazing, isn't it, how different we all are and yet still so much the same?

    Way to go with asking yourself questions and making your fingers stop to think. The reader always asks "Why?" and while most of us are willing to suspend disbelief, we want our characters actions to be believable. Best of luck with your piece :)