By morning, I would have pretty well worked out the next steps. Research and even something in current news sometimes added to ideas. If you have ever written a book, you know how that is. It's important to give some time to allow serendipitous happenings to add to the writing.
When I write a book, I do know where it's going. I know what the ending will be, but how I get there, some of the twists along the way, that's where the muse comes in. Fleshing out a story is the fun of writing and also where a person has to be open to new ideas that suddenly come along.
I am fortunate to be able to discuss plot elements with my husband as I decide on this or that-- particularly where it comes to action scenes. He gives me different insights-- not always appreciated, of course. I can do this with him because he's not a future reader for the book. He's its publisher. I've learned not to discuss too much of the story with those who will eventually buy a book. It can ruin the story for them.
On the week-end (at 114,00 words) I wrote The End, but again if you have ever written a book, you know the end right now is not the end of the process. It means the rough draft is finished which is for me a major yahoo but certainly not all that's going to be needed.
After I had saved the words on five jump drives and one memory card (insecure much ?), I planned to let it set for a few weeks. It turned out I couldn't do it. I wanted to see how it flowed, if the action made sense, and so I reread and did a first edit over the following few days. I tweaked here and there, but the real editing I will put off for a month when I can look at it through fresh eyes. I will do three editings with another by a man to see how it works from the male perspective. Only after that will I no longer consider it a WIP.
Right now, I feel very good about how the writing went, how the story developed and the characters. But later it could be like I experienced the other day when I was in a store and was feeling pretty good about myself until I looked in a mirror I passed and thought-- who is that old woman? I have learned that it's best to give it some emotional distance; and I have other projects to work on in the meantime.
an old map indicating some of the country where the story is set
While I am admitting my own more plebian tastes, I should add that I don't read stories that are negative or dark. I don't watch those kind of films either. I learned a long time ago that I needed to put positive things into my brain for both images and words. If something is going to end in a burst of violence, I am not their customer. If they look too emotionally traumatic, it won't be on my list. The only kinds of films I watch that have violence attached have it in a fantasy like the comic book movies. I like things that couldn't happen and are like a roller coaster of action say like Jurassic Park or 2012 (the latter of which critics despised). If it seems too real or is horror, you can count me out-- noteworthy or not.
I read for pleasure and although from the sounds of what others say, they do also, what gives them pleasure wouldn't me. I want a story that is easy to follow with emotional rewards. No overly challenging my brain. It's challenged enough as it is. I am not sure if that gives me an inferior brain. Maybe so.
So I've been doing some research on what 'experts' consider to be great reads. What makes a book a classic. Why would someone struggle to read something that was depressing? What do they get from it? Well, I didn't get an answer to that from my 'research' but maybe someone who comes here will have an idea and post it.
For me I read for two reasons-- one to learn things I need to know. That comes from non-fiction (including magazines and newspapers)-- as no matter whether fiction appears to be realistic or not, it's fiction. And then I read for pleasure and escapism whcih means nothing that ends with a tragedy, nothing I have to struggle to understand the why of-- I get that from non-fiction.
Image from CanStock and photoshopped along with my own photo from Tucson.