The Runaway Train

My story has taken on the characteristics of a runaway train. I know I’m writing it fast, and kind of skimming over some stuff, but I’m hitting the plot elements a lot sooner than I planned. Like 80 pages sooner. Sigh.

My problem is that my story has a ticking bomb and the characters need to be moving. I may have rushed the first chapter, but once they’re on the road, they have to keep going. I threw an obstacle in their path so they didn’t get where they’re going TOO soon, and when they get where they’re going, they’re not going to find what they’re looking for, but I kinda thought that would be about two thirds of the way through the book, NOT on p. 90. I think I have enough story to carry it through for the 320 pages for Intimate Moments, but I have to slow it down. I feel like I’m being dragged through it.

Add to this that I don’t have much romance in this romance novel. My hero is very dark and scarred and my heroine has trust issues of her own, plus she knows all about dark and scarred heroes. And while trekking through the jungle (even in a truck) gives them plenty of time to get to know each other, neither is really anxious to let the other close.

So I’m thinking I might have to change my goal to slow down the pace, BUT it still has to be something fairly urgent to get my hero out of hiding (which he is in the beginning of the story.)

As you can see, I’m a pantser, but this story has been in the back of my mind for a long time. I had just finally figured out the plot. Apparently, I didn’t know my characters as well, though.

And because I can: Image hosted by


Amie Stuart said...

UGH on the romance--maybe it's a bombshell?? =)

P. S. I guess I'm gonna have to make a DARA meeting someday so we can meet IRL...speaking of meetings my chapter meeting is like in 90 minutes and I'm sitting here in my ratty shirt slurping coffee and blog hopping =)

Happy writing!

MJFredrick said...

If it was her story instead of his, I'd say yes on the Bombshell idea. But he's the one who's compelling me to write it.

I did just finish reading that ms from my closet. With some structural changes, I think it will be pretty good. First things first, though....

I'd love to meet IRL - but I'm in SARA, not DARA. Though maybe I'll make that conference next year ;)

Anonymous said...

I think you have to be true to the story and whatever the characters call for. Don't force the romance where there isn't one. Let the story unfold and see what you have....

Trish Milburn said...

Hey look, there's a picture of you! I need to figure out how to import pictures. Maybe I'll do that today.

Kelly (Lynn) Parra said...

I'm a pantser too, and love dark heroes. Good luck with this book!

Anonymous said...

Mar, I think you should just let the beast be to speak! Let the story out of you the way it wants to come out, then...worry about all the rest in the rewrite and revision stage. You will know what to do!

FINALLY got started on my new book. I had such a hard time switching back to third person, after almost a year writing in first! But I pulled down my favorite Nora book and reading it a while reignited the third person spark. :) Nora heals all. :) I am still not sure if this book is a Bombshell or another HI...I will know within the next sixty pages! I'm just glad to be back at work on a new project at last, while I wait, wait, wait to hear from HI on THREE OF SWORDS.

You're on a roll, Mar! Let it go, and see where it takes you.


MJFredrick said...

Okay, finished painting the living room - looks much nicer.

Michelle, you're right. I was rereading that old ms and I forced a love scene and it just so didn't work. Later in the story, it will. Let the beast loose, you say? Why the heck not? After all, the words on paper are only two weeks old. What's to lose but time?

Go on that new book, JoAnn! I'm here to read it when you're ready - after I finish Trish's awesome book!

Trish, I set up a account to do the pics. It's really easy. Email me if you need help. Next, the stuff on the sidebar.

Jill Monroe said...

Oh, Mary - I have to say when the words come fast and furious like that - I LOVE IT. You can always fix the little details later, having those words on the page are so much better than a blinking cursor.

Jill (usually a panster, too!)

PS - I'm with Kelly - I love a dark hero, too!

Trish Milburn said...

Thanks, Mary, for the nice comment about my book. Hopefully Natashya will feel the same. :)

MJFredrick said...

Jill, usually I agree with the words coming fast and furious. You get a tighter book, IMO. I just worry about this one running away from me.

Trish, your book IS amazing. I was just sucked in. I hope Natashya buys it, and quickly!


M.J. Fredrick's books on Goodreads
Breaking DaylightBreaking Daylight
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Beneath the SurfaceBeneath the Surface
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Hot ShotHot Shot (Samhain)
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Where There's SmokeWhere There's Smoke
ratings: 6 (avg rating 4.00)

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I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher and a writer. I have five cats and a dog to keep me company. I love bookstores and libraries and Netflix - movies are my greatest weakness.
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