Post-it Magic!

I’ve been struggling with the last half of chapter seven of my current work-in-progress for the past few days, trying to bring the first 1/3 of the book to a nice semi-conclusion that sets up the rest of the book.

But the scene is throwing me for a loop. I think I still have too many people in the room. I’ve already gotten rid of a couple peeps. Now I need to figure out who goes where, who does what, and how the scene will end (okay, I know that, but it’s getting there that’s the problem).

So I’ve been hashing it all out, making notes, scribbling down ideas:

That would be my six pages of single-spaced notes, which includes chapter and scene breakdowns, character arcs, questions in need of answering, and, of course, Post-It notes.

I use looots of Post-It Notes. 3M has no need to fear for their financial future.

I even broke down last night and brought on the stick figures to help me block out this scene. Here’s a blow-up of one of those Post-its from the first photo:

Here are all the players in my scene. Note the two guys I scribbled out — got rid of them already. I’m particularly proud of the stick guy I circled in red down in the bottom left corner — he’s throwing a bed pan across the room at the girl holding the gun in the doorway. What aim!

And I also like the other detail I circled — that’s a tiny windup dragon in the middle of the scene. Neato!

In all seriousness, I’m also struggling with the gunplay in this scene. Part of me wants to get rid of the guns altogether, because I frickin’ hate guns. It feels wrong to me to give guns such prominence in this scene (it’s about the only scene in the book with guns), but I don’t think the scene works without the results of the gunplay — three shots are fired, and all three have serious consequences.

So… I guess I’ll keep ’em. Unless, of course, I come up with a better idea. Where’s my pad of Post-Its??? Later.

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