The Convoluted Makings of a Journey.

I know what it’s like – you do, too, if you’re a writer – you have an idea, a clear storyline, a character you really like and an itch to get it all beautifully presented.

Only the path of the tale is pretty straight and the ending is almost a foregone conclusion. You don’t want your readers to guess it, of course you don’t, and anyway there has to be a problem, a challenge for that character to meet and overcome. That puts a couple of kinks into the path, making it a more interesting stroll, only really you’d like some fascinating things to happen because, actually, what you really want is for this to be a journey.

So you pop in some more problems and a few twisty solutions, only some of them a tricky to pull off and you’ve got to work at getting them nailed down so they work without some inconvenient logic getting in the way and spoiling it, so maybe a few somersaults are needed, but that’s okay, it’s worth it.

Then you bring in someone new to deal with some of this extra stuff, only their very presence is causing more problems, problems you hadn’t realized you would encounter. It’s still worth it, right? Of course it is. You push on and suddenly space is tight and so is time and these problems are becoming seemingly insurmountable.

Soon you’re just looking at problems all around you which, by the way, probably means you’ve painted yourself into a corner. You know you have to work through this, and – surprise, surprise, your characters are looking at much the same set of issues.


By now the story is meandering quite nicely, with a few roundabouts thrown in, except that you’ve plugged this bit into another bit and found it blocks a pathway, but if you turn this bit around, it opens a gate alright, but it’s got razorblades around the edge and it’s a tight fit. Heck no, you don’t want to go that way, and soon you’re tunneling beneath the road, looking for sewer pipes you can use instead.

That’s how you end up with a multilane overpass and underpass system that’s so convoluted you don’t know if it’s night or day, if you’re above or below ground. For all you know, you might be driving up your own access ramp even while you’re going around in circles, and hopefully somewhere there’s the freeway.

Does this sound familiar to you? This is how I ended up with a series! 😀

Cheers all!



2 thoughts on “The Convoluted Makings of a Journey.

  1. D. Emery Bunn

    For Darkness Concealed, I come at it from the opposite side. I know all the secrets, the reasons why things are the way they are. The thing is, those secrets are buried beyond history itself. To even start to figure out what they’re doing requires a lot of luck, and frankly, platters laid at their feet.

    What’s funny to me is that the “convenient next step to the plot” device that’s operating in the story has a reason, and not just because I ran out of ideas for how to get them to deduce things. In other words, I’m subverting the tried and true cliche of the author just giving it to the characters.


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