Starting the 3rd Jack Forester Novel
The writing day yesterday was not a wild success in page numbers, but I found a way into the second chapter where Jack is re-introduced. It is all subject to revision, of course. First drafts are just the lopping down of trees to be later turned into furniture or heat. That’s the art of it. In any case, my efforts to create an outline or to cast ahead for scenes seems strangely sterile. It’s as if the story wilts when I poke it here and there. It has some skeletal features, but it is still soft and malleable, collapses easily, though it remains a presence with a pulse to it. The central premise is solid—that the hospital conglomerate, HealthWealth Partners, wants to acquire the New Canterbury University Medical Center and will dive into the shadows to do so. It’s the details that remain hazy. I sense strongly that from an artistic standpoint, for me, the best way to proceed at this stage is to feel my way forward scene by scene until some crucial momentum has been achieved, at which point it will make sense and feel right to lunge ahead and outline the remainder. But, writing a novel is like creating a beautiful path through a forest over rugged terrain. Given than analogy, I’ve caught a glimpse of the distant mountain I’m aiming for and have just stepped into the forest, trying to see the underlying shape of the land, starting to clear out the underbrush, making little scouting trips. Eventually a route will reveal itself and I’ll strike out.