So I had this blog post all planned out for today. Mel and I both write by hand a lot, and at some point we were talking about that. (It was a long time ago. She’s probably at work scratching her head. “We did?”) But I mentioned how I could pick out the flat scenes by the handwriting.
My intention was to scan one of the handwritten pages from a completed book—probably Kiss Me Deadly because I wrote that book almost entirely by hand—to illustrate what I meant. Unfortunately, I just realized all my notebooks and whatnot are boxed up in anticipation of the Great Remodel and the husband’s already had to give me the stern talking to about unpacking boxes I’ve already packed. Oops.
Basically, when I get into the “the zone” or whatever you want to call it—when I’m in the character’s head and the words are flowing and I can hardly write fast enough—the handwriting gets bigger, rounder, and very much sloppier. Scenes I’m forcing for word count or that just aren’t coming but I’m making myself do it anyway are done in my normal, fairly neat penmanship.
Those sloppy, chickenscratched scenes I rarely tinker with, but the neat ones—those are often flat and need much tinkering. So just by flipping through handwritten pages I can see at a quick glance where I need to go back and put some effort when I am in the zone.
Unfortunately, the only handwritten pages I have at hand right this second are from DG3 and I’m not putting one of those up. Writing out of order means I get to write all the emotional, high-impact scenes first and then work around them, and I can’t find one that doesn’t contain some kind of spoiler.
So anyway, maybe once the Great Remodel is over I’ll revisit this topic with illustrations, but for now that’s why there’s no blog post for today. Other than this one explaining why there’s no blog post, of course.
You got me pegged. “We did?” formed in my head a MOMENT before I read it. Then I died laughing and nearly snorted Pepsi up my nose. THANKYOUVERYMUCH.
Yes, handwriting. It is indicative of how well the story’s going, no? Sloppy=good, neat sometimes=needs a little work, sweetheart. I can totally relate.
The other thing I like about handwriting is the ability to tinker with it when typing it in. I’ll notice the words I repeated a zillion times on the page, or realize I’ve said this before and have now started to beat the reader over the head with how he/she feels/etc. Not so good. So it’s like a first draft editing–rough, but sometimes effective.
Although if someone wanted to type in 120 pages of my current WIP for free, I’ll forgo that editing. OMG, I’m SO behind.