Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Crossroads

Jane just broke Percy's heart. Or, did Percy's unrealistic expectations break his own heart? Will he come to realize that Jane's past doesn't matter and that her motives are honorable and not those of the whore he has condemned her as?  Will he have some deep, introspective, soul searching? Or will a wise mentor guide him in the right direction?

It's a hard question, and one that is not answered in my outline.  If he comes to the realization by himself then there will be quite a bit of deep pov without much action. If a mentor saves the day through sage advice and subtle manipulation, there will be dialogue (which is always a good thing) but it may be too deus ex machina and come off as cliche.

My outline paces the action, but I keep it sparse because my characters have minds of their own and don't follow direction well.  I am not a true seat-of-the-pantser, but I have learned to trust the direction my characters take the story.  Somehow, between now (April 28th) and the May day bonfire (May 1st) Percy has to realize that Jane was being self sacrificing and not cheap. Jane has to realize that love is important.  Percy and Jane can only come together (and I mean that in every way) when she has been honest with herself that he she is meant to be with him and when he respects her strength, shrugging off philosophy for real life. 

I now sit at the start of chapter 14 (about 40k words), about to write fluff (that I will probably later delete) in order to get the story moving. Jane has to buck up and pretend that her love for Percy doesn't matter and try to seduce the Viscount Kinglsey. Percy has to be professional and sophisticated while the woman he has loved all his life flirts with his brother.  It's a horrible moment to be in.  I haven't written more than the description of the spring air and I already hate this chapter. I may just go in the other room and catch up on episodes of House.

Have you ever come to a critical crossroads in your story and not been sure how the problem was going to get resolved?

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