I have wandered very far off my outline at this late stage in my W.I.P. I think I can push through to the end without going back and reoutlining. I have written my story down in my "working doc" over and over and over to refine it, to hone it, to figure out what the story truly was. It's there. The beats developed the more I brainstormed and they haven't really changed. When I sat down to write Wednesday, I really got in my characters way. Big time. In doing so, I may have actually gotten in my own way. We shall see. At this point, I'm just going to push through until the end. It is, after all, a Zero Draft. This means no going backwards through the forest. When the trail peters out, we struggle through the dense undergrowth to find another way. Growing up, dad always taught us how to find our way out of the forest in case we got separated from him while we were bushwacking and fishing. Follow the river out. If you can't hear the water, head to the top of the mountain where you can see it and find a clear path down to it. Then, follow the river out. This has worked very well in my adventurous zero draft. My characters have crawled their way through some pretty tight spots, which makes it all the more gratifying when they reach their own little mini goats! I feel like we have always kept sight of the river, for the most part. There were a few times where we had to head high to find it (and a clear path down to it) again. Those might not end up in the first draft! Only the rewrite will tell. All in all, it has been a grand adventure through this forest together.
This week my goal is to hit 4,000. I set a more modest goal for the week for two reasons: 1) my anniversary is coming up and we will be hiking with diggity dog for two days which may mean no writing on those days, and 2) I'm getting really close to the end (I keep saying this and it seems like I'm walking down that endless corridor that keeps elongating each time I reach out for the doorknob) which means I have to spend some time on that last riddle over the next week. I'll be calling my Dad, the riddle writer, for help and some clarification. I set my story in modern day and in a real location - the mountains of Eastern Oregon that I explored every summer as a child with my brothers and cousins. The riddles lead to actual locations, this will make it fun if the book ever gets published, for readers to take the book and actually go to the locations themselves!
There is also one last small part of my story that has huge significant impact that I haven't quite figured out yet. My character has to remember something. This something was whispered to her long ago and it is crucial to her success at the end of the story. I haven't quite figured out how she's going to remember it. I flew by the seat of my pants through the story with several theories and none of them has quite fit. Perhaps, I don't have to solve it in my zero draft, though. I can use one that doesn't fit and go at in the revision, if I must. Or perhaps it will come to me as it comes to my character. With that, I'm off to see the Wizard...
Canadian Zombie Babies
4 years ago