Musings on the Creative Process

As anyone who’s read my blog (sparse as it may be) knows when it comes to my writing I tend to be a bit methodical, planning large parts of my story before I even start writing. I’m sure not all writers are like this, but it makes me feel comfortable to have a road map. You see, I’ve always had a love for words, from reading books way above my ‘level’ to coming up with silly stories when I was very young to helping on a family ‘newspaper’ during the summer (we’re all creative in our own way).  My choice of a university degree -English- was highly influenced by this passion. I wasn’t thinking of what I would do with the degree or how I’d make money after graduation – though considering my current employment situation I probably should have been.  You see, in the back of my head, I have always wanted to be a word smith, a teller of tales and given my introverted, self-conscious personality (which I’m sure I’ve talked about in another blog) I knew I would be telling tales through the medium of writing as opposed to using the oral tradition.  It was my hope that immersing myself in the study of writing and literature would improve my own efforts.

Ultimately, it did, but I had to sort of unlearn the rules laid down by my professors and discover how to write creatively again. After a lot of internal struggle, first pages written then discarded, and a final realization that if I didn’t seriously try I would never know, I finished a manuscript.

Which gets me back to my original point, which I don’t think I’ve actually stated yet.  Ah yes, my need for a road map when writing a book. I find this predilection kind of amusing as I tend to be rambling in my speech and, as you can see, in my blog writing. Of course, I will eventually get to the point, which is about the creative process.

You see, I need to feel some sort of direction in my writing because, due to my struggle to get this far, I have this niggling fear that my creativity will dry up and my dream with die (I’m knocking on wood). It seems like a silly worry as I’m working on my third novel and I’ve got ideas for at least ten more.

Be that as it may, it’s when the plot changes without my knowledge, something happens before I’ve planned it, changing the whole dynamic, that I find most intriguing and enjoyable. It happened to me yesterday. I write romance so it should come as no surprise that there is the occasional sex scene in my novels. Well, I had planned on having my main characters have their first intimate encounter in a later part of the story, when they knew each other a bit better, but I wrote the scene in a different way and at a different spot than I had planned, almost as if, for a brief time, I lost control of the story. The progress of my tale has shifted, even if just the slightest bit, and I have to re-adjust. I’m not angry, but intrigued. What sort of creative soup was simmering in my subconscious while I wasn’t paying attention (yes, I’m a bit peckish)?

The mind is a fascinating thing.

Happy writing.

Rose Connelly



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. The Writer's Daybook
    Jan 15, 2012 @ 22:45:37

    I find it interesting to know that other writers have their characters tell them what is supposed to happen in the next scene.


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