So, I’ve conceded defeat… for the moment. I simply can’t focus for long enough to accomplish much writing at all. What I have decided on, though, is to employ Tactical Writing.
I’m not a good strategic writer, I fully admit. That is, I don’t work to a carefully developed plan, a grand strategy for the work in hand. I leave that up to chance, Fate, whatever you like to call it. You won’t find me checking where I’m going against a nice plan. What I can do, however, is employ tactical writing. In this, I simply “go with the flow”. At such times, I acquire a host of story scraps – mostly beginnings. At the same time, I’ll sometimes return to an earlier scrap and add some more to it. It sounds haphazard but it actually works quite well for me.
These tactical strikes are driven by moments of inspiration that manage to actually escape from my mind into actual written words. It really doesn’t matter whether they are entirely new or a sudden realisation of where an existing storyline needs to go. The file is opened and the words tumble out, without a great deal of effort on my part. Sometimes, I behave as if I’m feverish, the words are coming so fast! Then, once the immediate mission is accomplished, the file is saved and closed. Of course, it does require a good memory, otherwise stories would become a sad tangle. Despite my problems with memory loss, somehow I usually manage to retain multiple tales in my mind. It’s very much like the fact that I tend to read two or three books at a time.
The benefit of tactical writing is that ideas are rarely lost, and I even have the opportunity to bring several short stories to a conclusion at roughly the same time. The disadvantage is that I gain a plethora of small files that need to be kept organised. Still, during relatively arid periods, tactical writing satisfies the desire to write, and that can’t be a bad thing. It also fits moods better.