I’m reaching the point in the novella where I have to start worrying about the approach to the climax. Last night I took inventory of what I have so far and where I’m going. The answer was obvious.
I’ve got a rough rough rough pieced-together story with a lot of holes.
I’ve also go witches, a witch hunter, zombies, and weapons. I’ve got the main plot and I know the end.
To be honest, this is how most of my stories look at this stage, and I think it’s because only through writing the climax that I figure out how to fill the holes in the story.
The answer is the build. It’s timing. It’s tightening the tension. Think of stories like a good joke. Good jokes are only funny if the stories leading up to the punchline use buildup correctly.
I’m not going to know how to fill the holes in this thing until k figure out what kind of build-up I need to make the climax as intense as possible.
I knew this. I just forgot. Now, instead of sitting down at the computer and staring at it, I’m just going to finish the rough draft so I can work on filling in.
How about you? How does your story change after writing the rough draft?
I realized that I have a rookie corrections officer dealing with situations like a seasoned pro. It made at least one scene somewhat contradictory with a later scene where he loses his nerve and breaks down. Changing the way he reacted in the earlier situation, even only subtly (had him slump his shoulders as he followed an order he didn’t agree with) made me look at his character in a different way, which forced me to look at every reaction he has in the story in the same light.
Now, I’m editing his dialogue, reactions, etc. to try and bring his insecurity and feeling of ‘in over my head’ to the forefront, in hopes of making his eventual breakdown (and recovery) more powerful.
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That is AMAZING! Wonderful example! And it’s these types of things that none of us are going to catch in the first draft. 🙂