Writing Scene By Scene

I’m working on Mountain Rails of Old, third in the Family History Mystery Series. I finished the basic outline a month ago, and have written about a third of it.

As I get to know the characters — especially resident ghost Uncle Benjamin — I have almost more ideas than I can use. Rather than develop each one, I’m doing short scenes about the various events. It’s liberating.

I’m mapping out conversations and actions and putting words into the characters’ mouths, so to speak. Because these are a jumble of scenes, for the moment I don’t have to create smooth transitions or worry about whether I’ve done adequate foreshadowing. That can come later.

This is a new approach for me, and possibly not one I’ll use again. In the meantime, it’s enabling me to work on the different subplots in and of themselves. I can put them together (in order!) later.

Why try this? For a time, I’m doing some ‘day job’ work. I wanted to be sure I kept writing at a fast pace, but I can’t always do four to six hours at a time. I’ll have to think of a name for a method. Scatterbrained doesn’t seem quite right…

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