The DVD Menu Method

I don’t plot. I never write anything down, brainstorm, bubble box, any of those classic writing techniques. When I start a book I know the beginning and the end. The middle…well that’s a different story all together.

I lay in bed at night and dream of what’s going to get me from Point A to Point B. In my head it sort of looks like the scene selection screen at the beginning of a DVD.

I know what’s going to happen next, I can see the images in my head. Sadly, there is no mental remote that let’s me click from one box to the next.

My mental DVD player is frozen. I’ve turned it off, let it reboot, unplugged the darned thing, and nothing, NOTHING is working. No matter how hard I try I can’t get from Chapter 38 to 39. I know what’s supposed to happen in those two chapters. They are “explanation” chapters, they build a bridge to 40. Chapter 40 is the climax and it’s practically written (okay, not on paper but it my head).

I went online and looked for suggestions on how to combat writer’s block. None of them were helpful. Change your work area, write something else, do a writer’s prompt. It’s crap, all of it!

So, I’ve been sitting on my couch for the last four hours watching TV.

I suck.


  • erinlausten

    It happens! Man, does it happen to me too! I try to beat it into submission, then get pissed off, then delete and try again, and again until I throw a mini tantrum and go and write something completely different like a short story.
    When I am being reasonable, I jump in the car late at night and drive, letting the characters move through the scenes until they tell me where they are going, kind of like watching a movie. Sometimes it works, sometimes I get 500 words out of it, sometimes entire chapters. Sometimes I just get a McDonald’s ice cream sundae.
    Something will click. And enjoy the break with the T.V. because soon the story won’t let you when it comes crashing back in full force.

  • Regina

    It will come to you. My brain is usually pantster and things come to me all the time randomly and out of order. I do frequently have times where I have to figure out where the points intersect and how, but it comes to you.

    Keep working on what you can and the missing pieces will come to you. Perhaps in another dream, but they will come.

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