Monday, March 14, 2011

Three And A Half Questions You Alone Know The Answers To

I was talking to a friend of mine the other day about writing, and in the course of the conversation I came up with three and a half questions that I think might be helpful to anyone working on a writing project (book, story, script, etc.).

My friend liked the questions too (or at least she likes me and pretended to like the questions). So here they are:

1 and 1/2: Who is the person you picture reading your book and why is that person reading it?

2: If you were pitching your book to a movie producer, what is the one scene you'd use to sell the idea?

3. What was the Wow! I Want To Write That moment when you were working on your story?

I can probably answer all these questions about all my books (at least my books I remember writing, which at this point is no longer all of them). For the moon books, par example*, I pictured a young teenager reading the book for the fun people get from living vicariously. Any of you who aren't young teenagers or who are reading the books because they're homework assignments or who care deeply about the characters are simply wonderful bonuses as far as I'm concerned.

As far as pitching a scene goes, I immediately thought of the Yankee Stadium scene in The Dead And The Gone.**

Finally my Wow moment with Life As We Knew It was the immediate rush I felt at the concept: What would it be like to be a teenager living through a world wide catastrophe? For d&g, it was all of that with the additional twist of not knowing if the people you love most are alive or dead. And for This World We Live In, I felt an enormous sense both of Wow and relief when I realized Alex could show up in Miranda's home, rather than trying to work out a way where they'd meet on the road.

So there they are, my three and a half questions. These are all just focus questions, but it's really easy to lose focus when you've been working on a writing project for a long time.

Have fun answering them about your own work!

* Notice that little bit of French? It allowed me to avoid using the word "for" twice in a single sentence. Not to mention how classy it is.

** Pitching a scene about Yankee Stadium is a tres clever play on words.

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