Fall has finally arrived just in time for Halloween. Now all the little munchkins will have to wear coats on their costumes. So many times we clothe our true meaning with descriptors or create diversions for our plots that lead to no where. We give contradictory messages from our characters causing confusion and our readers to lose interest. Hopefully keeping our scary creatures, super heroes, princesses, cowboys, hobos, etc warm doesn’t cause confusion on what they’re pretending to be. So keep characters’ traits clear, plot lines strong and the energy ramped up heading to the climax. Don’t hide the struggle with unnecessary things.
Lily’s Lagniappe: Most plantations backed up to a waterway for shipping crops to other states and countries. The biggest crop during the Antebellum period was cotton. Most of the cotton was shipped to Europe.
The weather can’t decide if it’s going to be warm or cold, are you having the same dilemma? You love this character but hate the direction their taking, you love your secondary character and wonder it is really his story, and lastly the whole project is just tiresome. Try a very simple test. Take your dog, friend, spouse, or significant other and take a walk. Try hard not to think about the novel. Can you do it? Does it leave your mind? Can you concentrate on what your walking partner is saying? If you answer “no” to most of these questions, then this project is one you need to work on with major revisions. If you can answer “yes” to most of these questions then a new project is probably best for you.
Lily’s Lagniappe: On Mondays in Louisiana and parts of the deep south is red beans and rice day. Almost every restaurant will offer this southern delicacy for purchase. Why? During the Antebellum period, Monday’s were laundry day. The kitchen staff or plantation owners would put on beans and let them cook all day. Laundry got done with little or no problem while providing a delicious supper.
The leaves changing, the chill to the air and NaNoWriMo starting in less than a week, makes me wonder just how many writers take this month for what it offers. What happens if I find my plot going wonky or my characters lacking full development? Here is what I believe the month provides: a start and a finish. Will it be perfect? Heck no!! But it is a wonderful spring board to have at least the first draft down on paper. The finished product will not resemble it at all but what an accomplishment!! It is finally out of your head and on paper. Just keep writing…So your character is not perfect, or your plot needs a conflict; those are things you can fix.
Lily’s Lagniappe: If you are brave enough to try the NaNoWriMo prepare a bit ahead of time. Jot down the bare bones of the book you are going to write. Each day you can hone this list of what happens so you can stay on track. Now go forth and conquer!!
Watching the leaves turn this time of year reminds me of things I wanted and needed to get done this year. The proverbial New Year’s Resolutions… this website was on that list. It’s late October so it’s definitely time to get off the duff and get it done.
I’ve made some progress but there is still much to do. Hopefully you will see the results in a couple of weeks.
Today’s little something extra (that is the definition of lagniappe): Talk to your family members about their past. Story ideas abound in their lives. I waited too late for some of more ‘colorful’ family members; don’t let this happen to you.
My website is a work-in-progress. While I am working on it check out Lily’s Lagniappe (my blog) on the progress..