Monday, February 19, 2007

My Inner Dolphin

I've been trying to get in touch with my inner dolphin.

Did you know that dolphins sleep with only one eye closed? Also, they shut down only half their brain and they seem to choose which half.

Well, I've been working on a particular scene in book 2 but the realities of it seem just beyond my grasp. There's something missing and I can't quite put my finger on it. I know it'll come to me but I'd rather that be now than later.

Once in a while, I plant a problem in my thoughts at night and *poof* I have the answer in the morning. I've been trying to give this scene some thought right before bed so that my brain can mull it over while I sleep and *fix* it. That usually works great but not this time. This time I dreamt of swimming with dolphins. Strange. Perhaps I need more sleep. Think I can convince my kids to walk the miles and miles to school while mom goes back to bed so she can work?

Have you ever tried this method? Do answers magically pop into your head when you wake in the morning?


Therese said...

The think-before-sleep approach has worked for me, but I've had better luck using a writing journal.

If you haven't already gone this route, try it. I feel you have to physically do the writing, i.e. with a pencil or pen, in order to stimulate your brain in ways using the keyboard can't.

I'll often start out by just stating the question or problem, then writing "maybe if..." statements and following them through.

Oh, the other thing that sometimes works for me is simply trying to describe the problem aloud to someone. The act of attempting to explain often triggers ideas.

Hope you find your solution soon!

Wendy Roberts said...

that's an interesting idea. I'll try the journal and let you know what happens.

Anissa said...

I've never had success with specific issues being resolved through sleep. Maybe it's because I fall asleep so fast that I don't have time to contemplate enough. I can come up with great new scenes that way though. In the half-sleep, my characters get busy, sometimes even waking me up.

To solve specific problems, I'm more of a sit and think person. My brain is easily distracted; if I try to solve a plot problem while doing something else I forget about it altogether.

I like the writing journal idea. I'll have to give it a go.

Wendy Roberts said...

Anissa, so when your characters "get busy" and wake you up do you go and write things down? I'd be afraid to never fall back asleep LOL.

Anissa said...

Wendy -

"Get busy" Ha! I didn't even realize I wrote that. That could be taken any number of ways...

To answer your question, yes. Usually if they start interacting in the form of new scenes, etc, I'll pull out the computer and jot it down. Not full sentences or anything, just words, phrases, dialogue, etc. I do this in the dark with just the glow of the laptop screen. That wears out my eyes and after a short while they start to droop. And once the idea is recorded, I close the laptop and fall right to sleep. Usually. ;)

Wendy Roberts said...

Okay, I did try a combination of Therese's writing journal and Anissa's sit and think route and I was able to work through the scene *yay* The answers I came up with actually gave me more obstacles in the story but, hey, you can't have everything! LOL.

Anissa said...

Yay! Who knows, maybe one of those new obstacles will turn into a great little subplot.

Holly Kennedy said...

I NEVER get the answer by morning. I think my mind mulls it over and over and over for days after I initially plant the seed and then... poof... spits out a reply when I least expect it!

Dolphins only sleep with one eye closed? Really!?

Wendy Roberts said...

Anissa, I'm now up to my ears in subplots LOL. Got to start weeding them out.

So Holly, do you just keep writing other stuff and go back to that particular scene once the answer goes *poof*?