Start in the middle...
And see how it fits together.
I pulled a Stephenie Meyer and started writing a dark paranormal romance based on a dream.
It's not about vampires, and my MC isn't in high school. But there's one other similarity between Twilight and my WIP:
I started writing in the middle.
Remember how Stephenie Meyer dreamed up that delicious meadow scene about a boy and a girl having an intense conversation: how they shouldn't be together because he wanted to kill her?
It didn't make sense as a beginning because the reader would have no idea how they met, how their romance developed to the point where this was even an issue. And it would have been hard to believe they had time to develop a romance before he just gave in to temptation and ate her.
So Meyer had to write a new beginning that met up with the meadow scene, one that made you WANT them to be together.
It's an intriguing concept, writing the main conflict first. When we dream, our minds take us through stories, but beginning, middle, and end aren't as crisp as a novel. Often, we're thrown right into the dark hallway, running for our lives. Our minds fill in the details later: drug dealers chasing us because they think we have their designer drug, a monster who wants to eat our faces off, whatever it is.
In other words, you take off running and catch up with yourself later. There's a writing philosophy in there somewhere. And I think I want to embrace it and give it passionate kisses, because it's helped me to write almost a complete novel in a month without forcing it.
I'm still working on connecting the new beginning to the middle-beginning. My dream gave me the main conflict - a creepy, bone-chilling conflict. But it didn't give me any backstory. That was for me to fill in. Getting to know the girl in my dream (who isn't me but I wouldn't mind it during those steamy scenes), and getting to know the villain who's chasing her - it's been an exciting adventure.
Sure, there have been a few bumps, times when the new backstory rendered a shocking revelation in the second half obsolete. But it's just your typical first draft plot holes, things you face no matter what you write first.
My main take-away from this experience has been this: When I write first the scene that's screaming to be written, it makes the rest worth writing.
Wishing I'd tried this sooner.
What do you think? Midnight craziness on my part or is there something to this?