Tuesday, August 19, 2008

A schedule

I'm off schedule--both in terms of blogging and general writing-- since I was away for a long weekend, visiting family and getting some beach time. But as I wrote about last week, I had a major epiphany with the story I'm working on. And now I have a plan to tackle the story: I'm going to start over. Completely over. Just rewrite it from scratch. I've done this before and found it helpful, though I'm not sure why. Maybe not having something to fiddle with makes me try things that I wouldn't try otherwise. In any case, here's my plan to get a draft down this week:

Today: At lunch, go to the hospital near my office and journal about being there--the sounds, smells, sights, etc. This is important since my story takes place in the hospital.

Tomorrow: After work (before hitting a jazz concert with B), write the first scene, where Janine brings her husband to the hospital after convincing him that he is having a heart attack, not indigestion. They're nasty to each other, and he brings up the fact that she killed his dog.

Thursday: During lunch, write the second scene, where Janine fumes in the patient lounge, and overhears a doctor apologize to a patient and be forgiven. She fumes even more about not being forgiven for something much smaller, that happened much earlier.

Friday: After work, before doing whatever B and I are doing, Journal about Janine's friendship with Rita, who comes into the next scene. I need to get a better understanding of how these two interact.

Saturday and Sunday: We have a few plans this weekend, but I will find time to write each day, getting through: the third scene, where Janine's friend Rita comes to the hospital, and asks Janine a bunch of questions that makes us (the reader) realize that what Janine has been thinking/telling us about her marriage isn't exactly true. And the final scene, where Janine finds out her husband came out of surgery alive, and she realizes how much work she has ahead of her to repair her marriage.

This is the first story where I'm using an unreliable narrator. I'll probably blog about that experience sometime later this week. Best Blogger Tips


Repeater said...

Hey, good work, bug. Glad to hear you're feeling up about the whole process. I give you props for starting the story over. I haven't tried that (other than with the dreaded craft essay), but it seems like you'd have to have a lot of faith.

Writer Bug said...

Yes, faith you must have! But isn't faith the whole foundation of this endeavor? I mean, sometimes it astounds me that I could have so much faith in my ability to succeed at writing--something that many, many people try to do and fail. But without that faith, I'd never sit down and write.

missy. said...

hi! it's melissa, from your january workshop. i found your blog off your facebook page. so i'm working on a story with an unreliable narrator right now, too. i've never done it before. are there any short stories that you have found helpful? i'd love to check out any recommendations that you have.

Writer Bug said...

Hey Missy! Nice to "see" you! I know I've read some stories with unreliable narrators, but I can't think of any off the top of my head. I think Why I Live at the P.O. by Welty is one, but I'll have to go back and reread it to be sure. Have you read that one? I'd love to discuss it if you have. What's your story about? If you ever think about blogging, it's a fun way to keep in touch with fellow writers and get feedback on story ideas and stuff.