Friday, 15 November 2013

The Confessions Of A Serial Scrapper

OK, I hold my hands up- I admit it. I am a serial scrapper.

Now, many of you may be confused. "What's a scrapper?"

A 'scrapper' is what I call someone who continuously 'scraps' stories that they're working on because they are bored with them or they think they are not working. Don't get me wrong! It's alright to get rid of an idea if it's not working and there is no way of fixing it or the whole thing has just gone completely pear shaped. The problem emerges when you are constantly 'scrapping' ideas that you are working on to the point where you can not stick with any poem, screenplay or story right to the end. You think that it's not good enough or you just can't get into the flow of it. Parts don't start adding up and you soon find your mind wandering and doubts kick in.

It's when you get to this point that the 'magpie effect' can kick in and we chase after new shiny ideas and neglect the ones we already have.

So go on, now is the time to admit it. Answer the question honestly. Are you a serial scrapper?

Image Courtesy of Google


If you are, it's alright- this is a safe space after all! It's how you deal with it that counts.

Myself, personally? I found a way to get excited about what I was writing again. Say I was writing a story that focused around a couple of friends- I'd look at what could happen with that friendship. Maybe one will betray the other or one will be seriously hurt. On the flip side, one may fall in love with the other or one may save the others life.

Or say the issue is with the actual events of the story. Maybe you have a great idea but can't quite get there yet. Well I put this to you: why not write it first?

If you have an idea in your mind about how you want a scene to go write it. Simple. In fact, in my experience, this can be useful as it helps in writing the build-up to the scene. I even find that writing that particular scene first can bring up more ideas or go in a direction I hadn't even thought of.


Or maybe you should plan out where you are going with your idea by doing a time line so you can see where your story is going or a mind-map (spider diagram) of the events per chapter or act. Part of the problem that come with being a 'serial scrapper' is the lack of vision of where you are going with your idea.

Thankfully, using these methods, I am getting a lot better. Yeah, I still have moments where I think I've reached the end of the road but then I think about what I'm aiming for and it makes the road easier and so much more satisfying.

What are your ways of keeping with an idea, through thick and thin? Or are you also a serial scrapper? Let me know below!