Thursday, April 26, 2012

Rewrite It Alternately

Have you ever wondered "What if this happened in the story instead of that?" For example: What if Harry Potter died at the end of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Neville had to stop Voldemort?

I hate speculating facts. I really do. If I don't have enough data to feel at least 95% confident about an assumption, then I don't want to hear it or think on it. (I speculate and I get mad at myself for those moments.) But when I'm looking at "what if" in the past, I love playing it.

I'm big on finding ways through writers block. Maybe sometimes you just need a break from your current novel or maybe you need to write about these characters still but just not in your story to maybe uncover something you could use.

This method, for me, is called "Rewrite It Alternately". Now, if I'm stuck on my story, but I want to keep writing about these characters, then I'll ask myself, "What if X happened instead?" Sometimes, I can find a character trait that will help me find my way through my block.

For example, your group of five characters met up with a giant monster in chapter 10. One of those characters died. It was tragic. Well, think about what happened if a different character died. How are these characters different from that loss? Maybe even write what happened next with that change and see how it gets you.

Now, let's say you want to kill all your characters with a bomb because the story is just not going anywhere. That's the time to take a break and go do something else. (Been there, done that.) Then I take a different story from wherever I can and say "what if X happened to them? What would have been the result?"

I'm not gonna go back to Harry Potter. (Overused, in my opinion.) So let's say that Luke died at the end of Empire Strikes Back. Write out how Leia defeats Jabba and then the emperor.

Interesting twist, huh? Well, that's my anti-writers-block idea of the month.

Alien abductions are involuntary, but probings are scheduled.

1 comment:

Weaver said...

Harry Potter over used? How is that possible?

I think some of the what if on already published works is what fuels all the fan fiction out there. =D