The Magic of Writing

The easy title for this post could be, “Why I Like Writing.”

But that misses the essence. By a long way.

When I sit down to write a story, there’s nothing on the page in front of me. A blank page, utterly devoid of thought or substance. An idea is floating around in my head and I take that idea and work with it. I twirl it around, look at it from different angles, flip it forwards and backwards and roll it side to side.

Then I start to pound the keys on the keyboard and the idea forms into words, rolling across the screen, line after line. Sentences become paragraphs, paragraphs become pages, pages become chapters.

The idea in my head starts becoming a story. It started with an idea, a plan of where the story is going. But then the story happens, it comes alive, I’m living and breathing each breath, each word of conversation, the ebb and flow and ups and downs of the hero and heroine, the antagonist and participants.

Then, out of the blue, a new thought strikes and I throw a curve into the happenings. Just like life—we’re going along our merry way and then something happens that we don’t expect and we adjust. Will my chapter return to its original planned ending, or have I just changed the plot and structure so much that I am creating on the fly?

I let my imagination soar, like an eagle set free. I can create whatever story I want, bound only by making it real for you. Unless it’s a science-fiction story, I can’t have a space ship land in the middle of a picnic. But I can introduce a car careening through the park, machine gun blazing at an unknown adversary, catching a young couple by surprise.

Then the girl is kidnapped. How does the boyfriend react? How does he rise above his current existence, reach inside himself and find that something extra?

When I write, I see the story in my mind, in full color and three dimensions with sound and smell and emotion. The anger from an adversary, the kiss of a beautiful girl, the slap on the cheek from a woman scorned, the exultation of winning the race.

I get to journey into entire new worlds. I work on more than one story at a time, so I’m not constrained by one alternate reality. I have several!

When a new idea strikes, I flesh it out, start to work on it. Then another idea hits, and I put that one to paper. I’ve get a number of stories I’m working on now. White River is in the can. Next is a business thriller, “Checkmate,” with the first draft done. I’ll let that one simmer for a while as I work on a third and a fourth. Pretty soon I’ll go back to “Checkmate” and work on the re-writes and editing.

I’ve got a few chapters written on a western, believe it or not. Right now I’m on the second chapter to the sequel for White River. I always wondered if I could write a sequel to that book, but the right idea was never there. Then one day it was there, and off I went.

I’ve outlined another story that I have to do some research for, and I’m really looking forward to doing that research. I even have the concept for a sequel to the business thriller. And ideas for several more, written down, waiting for me. All of this creation, waiting to burst out.

Writer’s block? No, not that. Writer’s block happens if I try to force the story, if I must write. When I sit down and write for the joy of it, the magic is there. When I write the story for the sake of the story, the words fly across the page. When I write for the sake of the story, the magic happens. I stay up past my bedtime, capturing the next scene, eager to put that thought into words…

My dream is not just to write stories, but to capture the magic and put it on the page for you to read. I’ll have done my job well if you feel the magic, if you not only read the story, but experience the story. When it’s in color and three dimensions in your mind, when you feel the smile and the snarl, when you grimace about the villain and cheer for the hero, I’ve done my job.

The magic of writing.

I invite you to enjoy the ride with me. Just like my stories, how the journey unfolds has yet to be written.

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