A lot of study and background thoughts about structure has suddenly started coming together, turning my mini-PBEM into a highly educational forum for playing with stimulus and scene-construction and tension and so forth. Conflict and disasters. A lot of it has moved from ‘fermenting in the back of my head’ to my foremind; I started noticing I was doing something different and right about a week and a half ago and have been figuring out what and why ever since. It’s not that things have suddenly become markedly better, but that I understand why sometimes there’s some… jazz to scenes and sometimes they just lie there and flop boringly. I’m understanding in more and more detail almost every day, with every bit of fiction I read. It’s astonishing.
I feel like it’s been a long time since I’ve had this particular kind of learning experience. And it’s reassuring because it also tells me that… all the usual things really do work: study and repetition and so forth– even if there’s no visible gradual improvement. Something’s happening in the back of my head and one day, things start working differently.
The end result is that I’ve been feeling pretty good about myself the last couple of days. Like if I just keep trying and don’t sabotage myself, all sorts of things can improve, even down to bad habits.
Everytime I post about what I’m learning in my structure tutorial, I feel a little nervous. Writing the actual novel in November kind of feels like a month-long exam. Which is, well, what it was meant to be. But– as I post proudly about achievements in the tutorial, I also wonder if the final exam will bear out those claims or leave me embarassed and frustrated.