Buy one! Get the second one half off! That’s what a good percentage of the signs seemed to read at the mall today. I didn’t study them very carefully though. My college-age daughters were doing their back-to-school shopping. I came along to bankroll the expedition. But instead of watching them try on things, I was back to that Chapter 1 that has been causing me so many problems.
Last Wednesday, my critique group gave me some ideas for adjusting the time-line of events. It allowed me to raise the stakes for my main character. I know that I was more than a bit stressed out on her behalf. And while sitting out in the mall today, I might have even found the right words for the first page. At the very least, I think I’ve found the words that will let me move on. I’ll find out whether things are working as I’d hoped after I get some feedback from an on-line critique group.
Wrestling with words has always been hard, but delightful work. Some things don’t change. Here’s a poem that I pulled together in high school that still sums things up rather well.
I wish I could express myself
In ways both clear and accurate
That every nuance, every thought
Could be written as I want.
I have not gained the skills I need
For finding ways to capture words.
So stories float around instead
Of lying flat on a printed page.
Well, I have gotten some stories to lie down. I’ll look for this great quote by Elizabeth Peters that describes the process well.