I can’t really start something unless I have that perfect nail to hang the story on. I could write two or three thousand words before realizing that the beginning is not the beginning, and then have to go back and start somewhere else. Most of the time I can salvage from the existing written stuff once I get there in the linear story, but sometimes I can’t. The most I’ve ever had to cut because I’d gone off on the wrong tangent and had to go back was about 20,000 words. That hurt.
But, on the other hand, I’ve read so many stories in as a critique where the story begins about three to four thousand words before it really should, because the author thinks they need more back story in order to draw the reader in.
I’ve found I like to give one scene of domestic bliss before hitting the characters with a bus, and then go from there to deal with the consequences. And I think I’ve found that nail for this new story.
So, here I go…