Stay on Course

Stay on Course

By Rory C. Keel

In writing, most authors have a general direction for their story. However, a story will often veer off course and become confusing. While it is understood that part of the story is developed during the writing, subplots or irrelevant information should not take over and distract from the main story.

Causes that often affect the writer

  1. Personal or family difficulties – At times during our lives we experience various personal difficulties or family changes. A new baby welcomed into the family, a change in where we live or even the death of a family member can have a profound affect on the writer.
  2. Outlook of life due to the writer’s life changing course – Sometime our outlook and personal views on life can change due to social events or national emergencies such as a war or other national tragedy.
  3. Lack of prepared story research and material – With the many great ideas for a story there must be research. That one “Ah-hah!” moment will quickly run out of steam or fall off the track when we don’t prepare the material.
  4. A change of mind during the writing – This happens most often when we take too long to write. When time stretches over our story we begin to overthink our Idea and frustration sets in.

While the writer needs to allow flexibility for background and characters to develop, these things give fullness to the story and shouldn’t drive the direction of the story.

The good story divergence is the one that causes a change but still holds within the original framework of the story. The bad story divergence jumps out of the frame and pulls the story off course.



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