2. Writing Through
I’ll keep this short. It’s a practice that works for me, but I’ve never heard of any other professional writer who uses it. I call it pre-filming—pre-filming, then sleeping on it.
After I stop work in the early afternoon, I spend a couple of hours on other tasks, as far away from writing as possible. Then, between 4 and 5 o’clock, I come back to mull over the episode I’ll be writing tomorrow.
I already know the general outline, but this is a further fleshing-out. What feel and setting? What interplay between the characters? How will the action unfold? After an hour or so, I have a few scribbled notes and a much better picture of what’s going to happen.
Then—here’s the big secret—I sleep on it. I truly believe in that phrase, sleep on it! The unconscious mind sweeps away the possibilities I’ve discarded, firms up the possibilities I’ve opted for, and beds down the whole episode overnight (sorry about the pun!).
In the morning, it’s as if what was going to happen actually did happen. All I have to do is write it down!
I’ve got into the pre-filming habit in the last few years. It’s like the carry-it-over principle taken one step further. I had to mention it, but I don’t know whether it would work for anyone else.