We watched a documentary tonight on the Everglades. So gorgeous. But it struck me, all those strands of water moving (slooooooowly) toward one large body.
It takes ten days to make your way via kayak down the waterways to the Florida Bay. You have to map your way out because it's very easy to get lost in there. Once you're lost, it's said to be next to impossible to find your way back out.
I've felt that way writing. I certainly can write without an outline, but it's about as recommended as jumping in the water without a map or any supplies. I can get lost in the story, tangled in the threads that I'm trying so hard to weave together. I could drown. So I plot it out well and set out armed with supplies. The most vital supply in the Everglades - fresh water. The most vital supply in Jennie's writing - fresh post-its.
When I'm weaving a story, all of those strands wander through the pages much like the fingers move through mandrakes, under the raised roots of the cypress, around the pine. I have post-its all over the house - my laptop, my nightstand, The Hubster's computer. If I don't write them down, I could lose some vital part of the story.
The words pour over the limestone foundation, moving faster than the actual water in the Everglades. It takes a month for one gallon of water to flow through it. We can't take that long with our stories or we will lose our readers. My strands move steadily, connect, veer apart and all end up flowing into the same ending - that Florida Bay in my book.
Everytime I rewrite, I'm pushing off and into the waterways again. It's just as important to be prepared the second, third, fourth time around. I don't ever want to get lost out there.
What about you - do you like your stories meaty? Weaving those strands together? Or do you prefer the more direct way - just the one plot line, no veering off but staying the course?
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