A behind the scenes look at how a novel comes together!
Where the hell did he come from? I mean, the scene was flowing along rather well, it seemed to me, then a new character decided to make an entrance and throw a curve into otherwise linear chapter. This required a chat with the intruder. Glad I did! It turned out that one of the established characters was a player in the intruder’s back story. I could visualize how a new twist and turn might enrich the developing plot, and thus the intruder was given a name and welcomed into the novel.
Yes, this is how the plot thickens - unruly characters jostle for story position and make their case to the author, who must decide which road is taken. Then again, sometimes I think: "To hell with the road, I'm writing cross country!" It turned out that allowing the characters to roam freely in such an uncharted landscape worked, certainly for this trek into a paranormal mystery. And that, in the proverbial nutshell, is how A Turn at the Point came together.
Writing Cross Country resulted in a couple of "out of the blue" moments for yours truly. About half-way through the novel there was a distinct pause in the process, a.k.a. writers block. I don't care for that phrase yet there was an impasse as I pondered how to coherently connect two subplots.
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All of the characters and elements were poised for the race to the finish line known as The End. Then the Muse whispered "catch me if you can!" Another bout of a.k.a..
Months later I went to Sedona, Arizona to attend a lecture by one of my favorite authors, Graham Hancock. Colleague Dan Baldwin came up from Mesa for the event. We wiled away the hours before the presentation by enjoying the wonder of Cathedral Rock and Oak Creek.
Staying an extra night in Sedona, I fired up the laptop and declared, "Okay, Muse, gotcha! Let's finish this!" That's when the aforementioned "intruder character" wanted to literally be dropped into the scene. Sedona magic? Who knows? But three days later, I got to type "The End."