Not only was yesterday Independence Day, but my husband has been working from home this whole week. I love having him home, but this also means the routine has been a bit messed up. Couple that with my finishing a story last week, and you can see how this week might not exactly be called productive.
It hasn’t been a complete loss. I did read over what I had written for my next project, and I thought a lot about it. Best of all, since my husband is home, I can run ideas by him, since he is an avid science fiction reader. We had a great brainstorming session yesterday, and I think I solved a couple of plot problems that had me stuck the last time I worked on this story. Things are making a lot more sense now. This was the first story in a long time that I just completely winged. It was cool doing so, in that all kinds of things happened, and I’m not sure that the story would have been so “deep” if I had planned it all out. At the same time, winging it means I have a big mess to work with, and I have to go back and fix a whole bunch of stuff. I had to cut a couple thousand words of backstory, which were fun to write but just didn’t belong in the actual story (I might add them as an “appendix” depending on how the story gets published). I think I’ve discovered that, at least for shorter works, a mixture of “pantsing” and “plotting” works for me. I will start with an idea, write some, and then make a bit of a story map so I have a heading. But there are lots of blank spaces in that map, so I can still explore different things as they come to me.
My brain is still in a haze of ribs, s’mores, strawberry shortcake…. Hopefully by tonight, though, I can get back to work!