The last two weeks (in between Erik conversations) have been about getting my mind around the main plotline and a couple of little story arcs.
What’s interesting about this project is that if I get too intellectual, the process shuts down. The creative process is very similar to channeling in that I have to get out of my own way – but it’s distinctly different because there is not one particular consciousness for me to lock onto.
On the other hand, it’s funny how I am getting help. While I was reading an email about my recently crossed-over maternal grandmother, another email arrived from Audible.com. It was a completely unsolicited email thanking me for my purchase of “Writing the Blockbuster Novel”. I didn’t buy this book, but there it was, ready for download. I considered it a gift from Grandma.
So what I have developed in the last couple of weeks is not specific chapters, but rough outlines and more character background. I’ll be going back and changing Nate, Howard’s best friend from catholic boarding school – I’m going to change his background to be American, and deepening the friendship between the two young men in their 20s, although it was spent mostly apart. I think I’ve decided to drop Kim from the roster, and I may delete those chapters from Scribd to avoid confusion in the future. I’ll post the first drafts of these chapters as I write them, but I’m not going to post my story notes which would be huge spoilers.
I’ve absorbed a surprising amount of military knowledge, and despite my intellect wanting to argue the point, there is going to be a strong military story arc. That was surprising, and it’s requiring more research. I hope to find one or two Vietnam vets to talk to about their experiences.
I have written a couple of other chapters, but it’s more experimental, playing with John and Stephan, and how they relate to each other. At this point I think that getting the big, unifying plot line going is more important – the story of how and why Howard Frewin created the school, why it’s secret and how students are recruited – because this is going to play into the threat / dramatic question that drives the story for the kids in the “present day”.
So the result is: There has been progress, but I can’t share it! Argh!