Daily Archives: March 12, 2022

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My Story Themes Trend Toward Having A Plan

March 12, 2022 by in category The Writing Journey by Denise Colby

Do you find you have a theme trend in your stories that you keep coming back to?

I have heard that we tend to write where we are in life.

blog header with brown background and photos related to having a plan by Denise M. Colby

If that’s true. Then I’m all about plans and realizing that God’s plan is definitely better than our own. And that no matter how tight we might hold on to our plan, we need to be open to the idea that it just might need to change.

Spiderman had a plan too

I saw this so clearly in the movie Spiderman Far From home. In the very beginning of the movie Peter Parker slides into his seat next to his best friend and says, “I have a plan!”

And then something happened and he has a choice to make about continuing on, or straying from the plan. And he, like many of us, are not quite ready to give up the plan. So he continues on. 

He is so laser focused on his plan, he misses all the cues that something isn’t right. Until it’s almost too late.

How many times have you missed the cues that you need to change your plan?

Should you change it or keep going?

We hang on until we hit a breaking point and can’t control it all. And we feel everything is against us. Of course it happens because what we are doing is not fully working.

Once we let go we see new options.

New doors.

New opportunities.

My own plans have turned out differently.

It’s interesting being a parent of adult children. Things change daily. Doors open and close. And it reminds me of my own plans at their age. 

I planned out my major in college and decided that work in non-profit PR, doing special events, would be my thing. But taking a paid internship at a corporate job took me on an entirely different career path. 

I also thought I’d be married and have my kids by age 25. But I didn’t get married until I was that age and I was in no way ready to have children right away. In fact I had my first kid at twenty-nine.

And I don’t regret a single change in any of those plans. 

Because they turned out better than my original.

Sometimes we need to have a plan just to move forward.

I have done it with my writing. The plan was to be published by now. But for many different reasons, the plan has changed, multiple times. And I think my stories, my writing, and my mindset is in a better place because of the extra time.

Is it what I’ve planned? No.

Is it something I’m accepting? Yes

Image of checklist with pink highlighter checking off boxes. writing out plans is important

In my novel, “When Plans Go Awry”, Olivia did not want to depend on anyone else. She had a plan. It would be how she would survive. Except everything she thought she needed, she didn’t. And what she thought she didn’t need, she did. But she’s got to go through a lot of strife before she finally realizes it. The little town of Washton has to teach her a thing or two about friendship, depending on God (and not herself), and of course, love.

Not at all what she was looking for but everything she needed.

I think having a plan is important.

Being flexible with your plan is necessary.

Knowing when to fight for the plan and when to change it is smart.

Here’s to us writers making plans and knowing when to adapt them.

If you enjoyed this topic, Denise talks about Real Life Turning Points in this past blog post.

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