Gavin Whyte

Screenwriter & Author

If In Doubt – Write

This happened yesterday.

I was writing my current book and had no idea what was going to happen next.

I started to think of all the people who have told me that they would like to write a book but don’t know where to start.

I had just finished a chapter. I was in that place, that hovering place, that scary place, where I have no idea what I’m going to write next. I didn’t know what the characters wanted. I didn’t know what they were wanting to say. I didn’t know anything—other than what I had previously written. That helps, of course. (There’s nothing as daunting as starting a book.)

Then I found myself talking to an imaginary friend who was a wannabe writer.

“I don’t know how to start,” they said.

“I don’t know how to start this next chapter,” I replied.

“I’ll think about it some more.”

“That’s the very reason why you haven’t started to write your book. You’re thinking too much.”

“But when I think I get ideas.”

“Do you write those ideas down?”

“No. I’ve tried. But I always come to a dead end.”

“That’s because you’re thinking too much. Sit and write.”

“About what?”

“The first thing that pops into your head. It could be a name. A place. An emotion. A feeling. A desire. An urge. A smell. A taste. A fear. Write it down.”

“Then what?”

“You’re thinking too much. Just write. Here, I’ll show you.”

I was in that same place remember. I didn’t know what was going to happen next. I had left my heroine standing in a doorway to a tunnel. That was how the previous chapter ended.

To show my imaginary friend, I sat at my computer, the dreaded vertical line flashing at me, and wrote: “She set off down the dark tunnel, and quickly noticed the drawings on the walls.”

Here’s the thing: I had no idea, before writing this sentence, that there was going to be drawings on the walls. No idea whatsoever. At least not consciously. But now I had something else to play with, a new texture, a new colour to help me paint my picture.

Writing is done when you sit down and write.

Just write something.

Writing is rewriting, so don’t aim for perfection.

Just write.


I thought I would share that with you.

Best get back to my story.


7 responses to “If In Doubt – Write”

  1. This is great. I need more imaginary friends!


    1. 🙂 I’ll tell mine to visit you. No, that sounds a bit scary. I won’t do that.


  2. perfect imagination…go with it….


    1. 🙂 Thank you


  3. Ahh, the pure magic of letting it flow, letting your soul go, speaking through flying phalanges, imagination birthed onto the screen and respawning itself asexually. (See, I had no idea what comment would just now come out of me…) 🙂


    1. Haha perfect example, my friend.


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About Me

I am a screenwriter and author of The Girl with the Green-Tinted Hair, Happiness & Honey and others.



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