Lost and found

map

Joe’s Post #45 – What if there was a roadmap for story writing? Would you use it? Would it destroy the creative process? Would it make your story like every other story that used that roadmap?

We already have the basics of a roadmap, the western 3 act structure. Add the odd guide on outlining or The Writer’s Journey and whammo, there’s a few more beacons. But that’s about the limit of the directions. Kinda of like asking a local where the ruins are (or nudie bar or whatever you’re looking for). As often as not, they wave in a general direction. “It’s over there.”

That’s about the best directions we can get for writing. We know the story is over there somewhere. We can see it in the distance like a beautiful, imaginary castle. How we get there, though, can be as different as the stars in the sky. A literary path might include poetic language, memorable descriptions and lots of sunsets. A thriller novel might be very fast paced and include a car chase, a sexy sidekick and at least one gun battle. Stephen King might add a killer clown.

For me, the journey of writing, walking that path to the glorious castle in the distance, is part of the fun. Sure I’ll get lost in the woods. Sure I’ll get stuck in the mud. Sure I’ll even get disheartened sometimes.

But I’ll get there and what I’ll discover along the way can be amazing, things I never thought I’d find. Quirky characters. Odd locations. Nifty twists and turn.

lostSo, at least for me, I don’t want a detailed road map. I love the journey. I even love getting lost now and then. It’s how I make the story better.

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