I’ve spent a chunk of this evening trying to find a scene I remembered writing in relation to my novel. It was never meant to be in the novel itself – it was an exercise in solidifying the pre-novel lives of some of my secondary characters.
All I can find it an outline of the scene and this piece of dialogue:
“Davonte was a rascal. She got me to make my own first present from her.”
“Just part of it!”
What does it say about how long you’ve been working on a novel that you may have confused planning to write a scene with actually writing it?
I’ve probably mentioned four million and two times that my novel has changed a lot (I may be exaggerating, but only a little). Here’s another example, back from when Davonte was Dante and a man:
Dante’s anger used to be explosive, a force as large as his build. Now he carries it, a subdued companion that is always present but rarely speaks by itself.
In my endeavor to show and not tell, the part of my novel that covers this is a lot longer now, even though Danielle’s been cut out entirely.
At 0930 the jury unanimously decides to convict. At 1002, an APB is put out for Denielle’s arrest. At 1031 I learn about the WhoDidYouVoteFor project. By 1035 I have a headache.
I’m conflicted by the idea that it’s better to “show” when, as a writer, every piece of fiction I write is a story I’m telling. I think one real mark of a talented writer is knowing what to show and what to tell.
This is a continuation of this First Sentence:
“I think you underestimate the extent to which some sentients don’t care about other sentients — or don’t see them as sentients at all.”
“But I wouldn’t do that to an animal…to any creature that can feel pain and fear.”
In case it’s not obvious from so little context, sentients = sentient creatures/beings.
This is related to this story idea:
“Please don’t let her kill me.” The plea is pitiful and insulting given what’s passed.
“Who ever said she was going to kill you? What was it you said earlier? Oh, yeah. You don’t really ‘fit her profile.’”
“What is she going to do to me?”
“I don’t know. I don’t care. And I’m not staying to see.”
A lot of writing is thinking of the best way to say something. I like the first one but I think it may not necessarily be clear because of the multiple meanings of the word “well.”
In all cases, the first part of this is “I don’t miss him.”
I miss the idea of him well.
I miss the idea of him happy.
I miss the idea of him whole.
I miss the idea of him sound.
“Do you think they understood what they were doing?”
“How could they have and still done it?”
As is the case often, whether for better or worse, yesterday evening did not go as I planned. Practically everything I set out to do took longer than expected. I decided to go to bed rather than post here.
The tiny quote below is from a story where the character’s wife has just died (remember how I’m mean to all my characters?). It strikes me today that it applies to so many different relationships that end for so many reasons.
“We were happy together. Why doesn’t it ever last?”
Another in the long string of examples of my being mean to my characters:
“She’s gone,” I break on the word. “They killed her. I tried, I tried to save her, but I wasn’t fast enough, and I barely got away myself. They shot me with one of their blasters. They killed her.” I’m shaking. I didn’t want to, didn’t mean to, but the tears burst through. Swaying, I realize my feet won’t hold me against this and lower myself to the floor, lean my head against the palm of my left hand and close my eyes.
“I don’t think I can possibly explain how little patience I have after listening to Kyle’s self-congratulatory villain-monologuing for three weeks straight.”
I think the above piece of dialogue from one of my short story’s owes its existence to the Incredibles.
P.S. The above image is absolutely not mine. Pixar + internet memer.