I have hit the wall where you are writing along and then the muse goes silent, not uttering another word to you. This silence begged the question, why is this happening? Why now? I struggled with it for a while, attempted to move beyond that point, but to no avail. Then I realized the truth. My subconscious, the source of my muse, had seen something I missed. Somewhere in the scene I had been working on, I had made a mistake in the writing. It had created a problem that grew with every word I wrote until it all came crashing down. The only way to fix the problem was to start again from the beginning of the scene. My muse took the cue and the words flowed through me onto the page. When I reached the point where I was previously blocked I flew right on past it without even noticing. I never looked back to find what changes I had made. It really doesn’t matter what the changes were, all that matters is that I found a way around my block.
Recently I’ve been suffering from the other end of the spectrum. I’ve been working on my latest novel, A Memory of Love. The words have been hard to come by at times and even when I find them, I find that I hate where I’m heading with them. It has taken me quite a while to figure out why this is happening in this book, but I have finally found the answer that was eluding me. I was writing without the back-story. In real life, everyone has a back-story of their life. It’s what gives their life depth and purpose. Our characters need back-stories as well or they end up dead on the page. After writing a novel, you think I would have learned this valuable lesson. Obviously, I haven’t. I’ve decided that the book can wait until my characters have a life of their own and only then will I be able to breathe true life into them.