Friday, August 24, 2012

That Aha! moment

I love when the "Aha" moment hits me.  I love surprises but when the muse springs something new on me about my characters or storyline, I become really stoked.

While driving this morning, I was thinking through the dialogue of my characters in my upcoming novel, Death's Valley.  Yes, I edit in my head even without my manuscript in front of me.  And something new occurred that I had not thought of, nor did I anticipate.  This slant will sharpen the edge of the story and unravel some previous mysteries that my reading fans should enjoy.  But the true wonder of the revelation is that this weaves the story together even better than I originally planned.

The Aha moments are reasons why I cannot rush through a book and shove it into the world for others to read.  Writing is sometimes like an artist painting on the canvas.  Only we use words, not paint.  But for a work to really be complete, one must catch every detail, no matter how small it is.  If you boil grapes, press them, and bottle the juice, you don't have wine.  You have grape juice.  The juice must ferment with sugar and yeast and age over time before the alcohol produces wine.  The same holds true with my methods for writing.  I won't type straight through the novel, and voil√†!, it's done.  No, I go through every page at least fifty times and some up to one hundred times before I'm satisfied with my novel.  The process is tedious, and maybe I strive to be a perfectionist, but I don't want a poor product on the market.

Happy Friday, folks!  Have a great weekend!

Leonard D. Hilley II


  1. I'm the same way with my music...I am ALWAYS running it thru my head looking for a better line or angle.

    My advantage is that, unlike a book, I can change words ANYTIME - even after the song is on CD. I JUST revised a line last week to a 3 year-old song. I NEVER liked the one line - and, while driving, found a new one,

    Once yours are published - they are stone.

    I used to drive ALOT. It is also how I came up with:

    Eva, can I pack Curts truck cap in a cave.

  2. I get a lot of good ideas while driving on long trips. When I have almost finished a novel, driving does help me track through the storyline. Now, that's driving on an interstate. Not through intersections where people run red lights or stop signs. Focus shifts to survival then. Best!