Did you know that the blank screen is the greatest nemesis for a writer? It’s true. I have found that when it comes to writing a story never arrives fully formed there is always a part that its illusive.
Stories are broadly broken down in to three parts or tercios.
- The Beginning
- The Middle
- The End
This is probably not a revelation.
Consider a superhero: Tyrannosaurus-Woman. The middle of the story seems obvious a woman who fights crime by becoming a massive dinosaur. It could be good. You can’t have a superhero with out an origin story but hasn’t it all been done? We all know several superhero origins: radiation, botched science experiments, or just being an alien. So Its unlikely that Tyrannosaurus-Woman could offer anything knew in that regard. The beginning is the issue. How does a superhero story end? The bad guys are defeated but you need a pretty good bad guy to stand up to a tyrannosaurus.
Consider a space opera: Trek War. The beginning is easy. An ensemble on a starship: the warrior, the fearless leader, the faithful second, the brilliant engineer, the doctor, the annoying character, and the one who’s job is to die. The end is again easy they return triumphant – unless you ask Ensign Ricky’s parents. What about the middle? I don’t want another science fiction film of an alien invasion. So it’s a challenge to find something new.
Consider a fantasy novel. I’m working on a fantasy novel. The beginning is easy. A young woman discovers she has magical powers. She is excited by the prospect. The middle of the story is okay. She hones her power and discovers what she is capable of. She has to have challenges so there will be a bad guy. That’s not too difficult. The end is difficult. Well not the very end. I’m pretty sure I know what the last line of the novel is going to be. How the story actually wraps up is very evasive.
Some people think, as I’ve said before, that an idea is the most important thing in writing. Ideas are easy for me its the bridging. I can imagine my protagonist as an ordinary woman.
Her name is Stacy Tanner. She is studying journalism. She also works at the university as a note taker for children with dyslexia and other learning difficulties. She enjoys science fiction and knows taekwondo. She has a boyfriend, Jake MacNiell, and her best friend is Tina Hilton.
Later she discovers her magic. I know how she will be with her new powers, no spoilers, but how do I get her their? That is the problem with my novel. The bridging. I know the stages of Stacy’s life. I don’t know how to get her to each new reality.
I’m not giving up. This novel will be finished… at some point. Some authors speak of their work almost like it was a vision. Its like they can see what their characters are doing. Stacy is forthcoming about somethings but doesn’t want to tell me the whole story.
Writing is a battle ground. I hope to win the war soon.