Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Getting From Here to There

My regular walking route includes an uphill stretch--and, after all these years, the climb to get from here to there never seems to get any easier!

Once a group of four bicyclists passed me on that hill. The first three pedaled by with apparently little effort. Whish. They were here, there, and out of sight. But then I heard labored breathing, and a fourth rider came up on me. She struggled. She strained to pedal. Her front wheel wobbled. But, with a zigzag here and a zigzag there, she pushed on and finally reached the top. A seemingly off-beat technique--but it worked for her.

I'm struggling with an attempt to get from here to there, too--in a passage in my WIP. I need a smooth transition from one season to another, while skipping over a season in between. It's been an uphill climb to keep from slowing down my story's pace.

Irwin and Eyerly's Writing Young Adult Novels has helped give me perspective on the subject, especially Chapter Ten's "How to Get From the House to the Barn." Here the authors describe such transition solutions as "The Flea Hop," and "The Long Jump," giving great tips on how to bridge time along the way.

In some ways, it all seems rather simple. But in other ways, I'm still zigzagging. Have I used the best technique to get from here to there? Does the passage still bog down, stretch out too much, or have I shrunk time effectively--and (seemingly) effortlessly?

All are things that still need to be considered. But like any uphill battle, progress will be made one step, one pedal, one word at a time. And I'm learning as I go, and enjoying the view.

So how's your climb going--in writing or otherwise? Any tips for getting to a desired destination?


  1. Time is such a fluid concept in fiction. Sometimes 400-page novels cover only a few hours, while short stories can span centuries! It's a challenge, to be sure, but I think it's also a fun aspect. There are so many possibilities!

  2. "How to get from the House to the Barn" - I love it! I may have to get a copy of this book. Great post, Kenda. :-)

  3. Like the analogy you used:) My climb zigzags here and there, and sometimes is smooth, but I'm getting there. Thanks, too for the info on the book. Nice to meet you too!
    Have a wonderful day,

  4. Kenda, I think your attitude speaks volumes. You're doing your homework and you are open to a variety of ideas to move your WIP along. It will come. The climb? Definitely uphill! I'm right behind you :)


  5. Thanks K.M., Shannon, Karen, and Marissa for dropping by--and for your feedback and encouragement. Appreciate hearing from you!

  6. Ah, I'm a total zigzagger. Writing is hard for me. I have to start over a lot. I try and try, and sometimes it's still not right. But I will make it to the top. Oh yes. I will.

  7. I want to get to the top faster, but at this point I have to settle for little by little progress daily. :)

  8. That's exactly how it feels. Uphill, but the view is still nice on the way. I'm a new follower, nice to meet you!

  9. you are invited to follow my blog