Following on from yesterday’s Inch – about the editing of my novel manuscript, Flint and Feather, I began a revision of the scenes by calling them, instead of scenes, obstacles. In the sense of obstacles to be overcome. I didn’t just change the titles, I set up a Word document and started to make précises of each scene-become-obstacle.
Now the tension in a novel is increased by heaping the hero with obstacle upon obstacle until there comes a climax and the hero achieves his object (in some sense – his or her death might be winning).
The process is proving to be a revelation. Some of my scenes, aren’t. They don’t present any obstacles. So I’m having to define to myself what they are and incorporate them properly.
And then there are Dwight Swain’s MRUs: Motivation Reaction Units. But that’s for another Inch of the Day.
I’m not going to do IOTDs over weekends from now on.
Tomorrow morning I will be practising songs from Bob Chilcott’s A Little Jazz Mass and John Rutter’s Psalmfest for Thursday night’s choral rehearsal. I have other fish to fry in the afternoon. Fried Masses and fried Psalms. Then fried other fish. I’m frying all the time.
Next week I’m going to be frying artwork in the same way as I’m frying my novel, as projects and sub-projects and focussing on the obstacles to be overcome, and how far I’ve got with each to date. Sort of collating visual material into intelligibility.
Backward synopses again. Industry has to be organised, just like beds on allotment plots. Or there will be no harvest. And the world will not be fed. Art is nourishment. We need it, or we will shrivel and die.
Just to end on a cheerful note, here’s a song from Rutter’s Psalmfest: O Clap Your Hands.
Enjoy! Sing along!