Early Morning Inspiration And Then, Not So Much

Last night, or more accurately early this morning, I woke up and had an a great idea for a setting for my NaNo novel. I was thinking this is a super breakthrough! I was coming up with all sorts of details on the possibilities for side stories and the like, details about the physical surroundings and even some thoughts on architecture.

I was pretty happy with myself.

So I went to work and while scratching out some notes about the smaller things in my universe-to-be during my down time, the roof fell in on me. Not literally, of course, that would have hurt and I wouldn’t be writing this; but then…

A little voice in my head (don’t worry, normally he keeps to himself) said,  “Umm, Tom? All of this stuff is fine, well, and good but aren’t you missing a couple of things? Just a couple of little things like, oh, I don’t know, maybe a protagonist, possibly an antagonist, a plot arc could be a nice addition… Not trying to be critical here, after all the farms are really well thought out and all. The descriptions of rural life are well done, but… Jus’ sayin’.”

I hate it when he’s right. I got so caught up in the development of where the story is going to happen, I forgot to PUT A STORY there.

So there is the problem du jour.  Coming up with the real elements of a novel and not getting sidelined with the stuff that can, and really should, be built around the other elements of a great novel as listed above.

So now I am off to go looking about for a protagonist and a conflict. I’ll let you all know how the search progresses.

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6 thoughts on “Early Morning Inspiration And Then, Not So Much

  1. My stories always start with a concept before a story or character. So I feel you. I often flesh out the world that such a concept could exist in before I build the plot.

    I do this pretty loosely though, and I don’t do specific worldbuilding until my story calls for it. It takes a lot of self control but it saves time on getting attached to places and people I’ve designed and then never ending up using them.

    • You see, that makes sense to me. I have a concept of the world first then imaging possible characters and their conflicts within that setting. Somehow, however it always struck me as backwards.

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