Started to get really into the new book today, the sequel to The Watchers. It hasn't even got a working title yet but I have a fairly good idea of where it's going.
I'm starting to think that this is one of the nicest stages of writing. You have characters you like and a (rough) story that you want to tell. You start writing with a few sentences as a guideline. E.g. "Evie goes here and this happens, she's really annoyed and then she meets so-and-so."
What's amazing though is that as I'm writing, Evie starts getting her own ideas and bumping into people she doesn't expect to. In chapter 2 for instance she runs into Annette's younger brother Ben. We haven't met Ben before this point - until now he has just been a name. Now he's a living, breathing character, who's full of grief because his sister is dead. He's quite a forceful little bugger and seems to be shoving himself into a plot twist near the end - none of which I anticipated.
I think this is the bit that Stephen King describes as 'creative play'. Later there will have to be more sophisticated plotting - this will happen in this chapter, followed by that in the next. I found at that stage with The Watchers that it began to feel a little 'join-the-dots' as I wrote it and that it took some of the fun out of the process of writing it, until I reached the last six or seven chapters. On the other hand, it meant that the book was written fairly tightly and needed a lot less work in the revision stage than it might have done otherwise.
Anyway, I just have to enjoy this bit - and hope that The Watchers finds a home... otherwise I will have TWO homeless, urchin books to take care of!
(Cool pic came from here.)