Iceberg Fiction

It’s raining, just in time for me to get out the door for a run. The garden is already thrilled, Odd Trundles has retreated to his Fancy Bed in protest, Miss B will complain all the way through our soggy sojourn, and at least there won’t be very many people letting their dogs offleash in this weather.

Small mercies.

I blame the sunshine for yesterday’s slowness. I could not settle for the life of me, and as a result only barely got wordcount on Atlanta Bound and only half of what I needed on Hostage. It’s probably the echo from the one really intense scene in the former that robbed both of the requisite pressure for forward impulse, and there’s no cure for that but time and stuffing the artistic well to its accustomed level. Ginny and Juju need to have a talk about grief, Lee needs to suffer some pangs of conscience, and Duncan Harris (a new character) has secrets. Not to mention in Hostage I need to figure out the etiquette for a new crown princess to visit her father-in-law’s concubine.

Even if the etiquette doesn’t make it onto the page, I need to know it. The vast bulk of worldbuilding rests below the surface, like an iceberg. The reader only sees the very tip, but without the mass underneath, it’s merely pasteboard and doesn’t convince.

So if I am a very focused writer and get a scene in Atlanta Bound plus finish the introduction to the lonely concubine in Hostage, I can write the scene in Hell’s Acre where the Rook meets Miss Dove as a reward. And yes, I do reward myself for work with…more work. If I could just download the stories whole and then revise–but no, I have fingers that must translate, and an entire body behind them that needs to be cared for as well.

Which means it’s time for a run to shake all the cobwebs loose and plan out each scene. Or I might just run with my brain tuned to an expectant humming, letting the engines below my conscious floor arrange things to their liking. Whichever happens will be welcome, as will sweating out leftover stress.

Over and out.