Sorry, I’ve just always wanted to jokingly use the “one weird trick” trope.
Although maybe in this case it’s not entirely a joke – nor is it all that weird.
In 2018 I started writing a new novel, which I had so much fun with at the beginning. Yet I’ve been feeling out of sync with for this entire year. Two years and I’ve only written twelve chapters! I’ll give up reading a book by page 50 if I’m not into it, yet I’m such a completionist with my own work.
My problem was that I’d started this novel with a certain structure in mind. But as I worked on it, other ideas came out. There were things that the story was trying to tell me. It took me a long time to listen. I had an outline and I was going to stick to it!
However, I got a throwaway line from Chapter 6 stuck in my head, and I liked it so much that I thought I’d see how it worked as the first line of my entire novel – and then all the little gears started clicking into place. I’d been stuck in a rut, and his new beginning helped me to see a clear way through my project.
So, what’s the one (not-so-) weird trick?
With this particular project, the trick was to pull something out of the middle and see how it worked at the beginning. Ripping the middle out of your project isn’t always advisable – or possible – I know. But approaching my project from a completely unexpected angle made me excited about it again.
Is this something you can try with your project? Maybe the weirder, the better? Let me know what you think!