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[personal profile] jenschmitadam
When I first started writing, beginnings were easy for me. It was the middle that tripped me up. And then I learned how to slog through the middle, only to run out of steam by the end.

Now I can write endings. Not necessarily good ones, mind you, but endings nonetheless.

But somehow along the way I've forgotten how it feels to sit down and dive in to the start of a story. There's just so much riding on the beginning, now. I know that if I want to reach the end I have to have a strong start, a solid foundation and enough momentum to carry the story all the way through.

Suddenly beginnings have become hard.

This ballet story has given me fits. I've written a short story version. I've written a synopsis. I've written an outline. I've written pages of notes. I've written dialogue, description, scenes...

And I've written the beginning at least... oh, at least a dozen times. At first I wasn't sure how to tell the story - first or close third? Before or after [this certain scene]? And then, even after I'd identified the first moment of change, I couldn't decide where or how to describe that change.

But I think - I hope - I've finally figured it out. I went back and rewrote the beginning AGAIN, and so far everything else is much stronger for it. I'm not done tweaking yet, but at least I'm comfortable enough with it that I can plow forward again without worrying that the whole darn thing is going to collapse in a useless heap of rubble words.

Pages done tonight: three*

*I'm not using a word count because I'm writing by hand.

on 2011-04-20 03:44 pm (UTC)
Posted by [personal profile] tangledaxon
Beginnings are so, so difficult to get right. I think that's one reason I just begin wherever, write the whole novel, and worry about tweaking the actual beginning later. With my last novel, that meant cutting an entire chapter of stuff that really didn't need to be shown so that I could get right to the main thrust of the story, the real inciting incident.

Which is my long-winded way of saying, you're definitely not alone. I think a lot of people struggle with beginnings. Wishing you lots of luck.


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May 2011

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