November 15, 2011


Today's (very brief) blog is about one of my favorite parts of writing: the beginning.

Not the actual beginning, since opening sentences can be really hard to get right (or at least not overthink). But the very beginning, the minute the sperm starts burrowing into the egg. So to speak.

I have one of those, and it's such a good feeling. These are the happiest days for me, when it's all ideas and thoughts and lying on the bed in my pajamas with tea, eyes closed, imagining and scheming and plotting and wondering.

Making me happiest right now:

New characters who need names.
A whole new era to explore, which means LIBRARY TIME.
Taking the loose threads hanging off this idea and braiding them together into something that resembles a story.

Do you like the very beginning stages of projects? Or are you more comfortable when it's time to actually write?


  1. That "Oh. Oh. OH!" moment is really exciting.

    Beginning writing can be exciting as well, but it's more nervous-making for me -- like comparing paint chips and selecting a color versus actually dragging out the drop cloth and edging tape, and thinking, "This is gonna be some work; I hope it turns out the way I want!"

  2. I agree that the idea period is exciting and thrilling. Halfway through, even when I love the piece, I can't help thinking "How long is this going to take?!?" but that's just the impatient person inside me talking all the time. If you don't love the characters then the story isn't worth producing, but when you do 'Booyah!'

    Yay new ideas and new books from writers we like.

  3. I love the beginnings! Everything is bright and new and shiny. Sometimes I get so anxious that I jump into writing before it's all truly marinated though, and that can be dangerous.

    When brainstorming, I like to use my long commute (1hr each way) to let characters walk around in my head. And chat. And wander down different plot paths, just trying them on for size. It's wonderful. And sometimes they like to keep me company late at night. That's nice too, but far too often they keep me from falling asleep... ;)

    Great post, Amy!

  4. Long commutes are excellent for brainstorming (or marinating, or percolating -- I do like the brewing metaphors!). I had one for years, and it was perfect for letting that happen. Now it tends to happen in the car or in the shower, which isn't really long enough to get too much brainstorming done, sadly.

    I get the halfway through blahs, too, Jenn, but I think that's why I don't outline too extensively. I need to leave myself some things to discover while I'm writing, or it gets boring.

    I want threaded comments. And I want my tags back! Blogger is annoying me.