Sunday, January 9, 2011

Herding Cats

"It's like herding cats."

Some of my finest work

This is one of those expressions I hear frequently at work, especially from upper management. And it always sets off some beautiful imagery in my head. Frenzied felines, with fur flying, running in all directions.

Interestingly, I find it applies more to my writing than to my life as a cat rescuer. At the shelter, I sweep, mop, scoop litter boxes, photograph the animals for our website, etc. While I do have to get one cats attention at time, for their glamour shots, I never have to get them all heading in the same direction at any one time (thankfully).

But with writing, after a while, I start to feel like a cat herder. I have a plot arc that was going fantastic and suddenly shot off for the mountains. Then there's the quiet, supporting character, happy to sit back and help, until she decided to be the star and pushed her way into the lead. It's not an easy job to keep track of what everyone is doing and where everything is going, and sometimes it's okay to let them run wild for a bit. But in the end, they all need to come together to form a cohesive story.

At least it's better than dancing with them, right?

1 comment:

  1. I need to take a video of Tuna Friday at my house. It's a cat stampede!