I have always had confidence in my work. Even when I write junk I still see the shiny light. Kind of like the worlds ugliest puppy being loved by her mother.
Some may view this as arrogant, cocky or full of myself and, I must say, I agree. But I have always felt we need a touch of arrogance floating through our veins otherwise fear and doubt and all that other nasty stuff will take over.
Why do you hate me?
For those who have been around me since I started this writing gig it should come as no surprise how shocked I was when the greatest prologue ever fell flat.
The scene was perfect. The writing was fun. The opening began in a small church in the middle of a small town. A local resident had passed and a local gathering of family and friends had come together.
Two little ladies sat in the back giggling and gossiping like local school girls.
Of course it doesn’t work. Who cares?
Did it have anything to do with the story? No. Were they seen again? No. So why do we need this?
Why so many questions?
Looking back I should have put a leash on my sharp tongue but when a group of writers challenge you with questions that are hard to answer one tends to get a little grumpy.
I’m sure I could have found a future for these loveable characters but I held my ground and demanded their short visit would stay. As you can see, listening wasn’t always my thing.
The characters were likable, I argued. Their scenes were real. The dialog sharp. Come on people, what’s not to love!
Yes, I was shouting.
Maybe, just maybe, I was wrong.
But sometimes confidence, or in this case stubbornness, can turn a writer blind.
So what did I do when I realized I might be wrong? First there was denial, followed by anger, bargaining was in the mix and so was depression. Finally, after a while, acceptance.
When I think about it this all makes sense with the scene opening in a funeral, doesn’t it.
I will rebuild her.
Not long after I scratched the prologue I made myself a deal: Just because the scene is out doesn’t mean it’s gone forever.
I can always create a novel centering on these two little ladies. I could add a funeral and create the biggest backstory on the dead character the world has ever seen.
Now my greatest prologue ever is safely tucked away. Sure, the home I placed it in didn’t exactly work but someday I’ll find them a better place.
As for you, my dear friends, hang on to those early drafts. Something special may await between those lost words and broken homes.