Wednesday, May 4, 2011
This tree grows alongside the highway near my home. Yep, it’s growing straight out of a rock formation. I like this little oak that struggled to live and is now thriving. It reminds me of the stories of my heart, and the struggle I have in getting them on paper, like the one I’m working on now—Disappearing Act.
Early on, a few areas of the story were well defined, like the tree. Other elements were like the dark objects in the branches. Unclear, muddled ... blobs
The story was triggered by a news report about a woman with amnesia who finally went to the police after five years. Instantly, I wanted to know why someone would not go to the authorities if they had a total blank about their lives. Disappearing Act was born.
Scenarios popped into my mind. Maybe my heroine woke up and there was a dead man next to her ... with knife in his chest. And, maybe she was holding a satchel of money in her lap. That would tend to make someone not report amnesia. Disappearing Act began to take shape and characters developed.
While the heroine might not understand who she is, I, as the author had to know. I knew that even if she never regained her memory, the core of who she was did not change. What were her values? What was that one thing she wanted, but believed she could never have? What lie did she believe before she lost her memory? Because all characters have lies they believe that tie into their greatest fear.
Slowly, the story and characters came into focus, and I was able to see those parts that were unclear. I’m a long way from being finished, and sometimes Disappearing Act takes unexpected twists and turns.
Like the Sole Tree.
Admit it. You thought those were birds in the tree, too, didn’t you?
How has your WIP taken twists you didn't expect?
I asked God to teach me patience and He gave me a book to write
Photo curtesy of students who buy new tennis shoes and fling them up into the little oak. There are now approximately a hundred pair of shoes dangling over the highway.