What a brainstorming session looks like.

April 14, 2007, I was trying to wrap up the ending to Shades of Milk and Honey and totally stalling. Totally. I’d written myself into a corner and couldn’t find my way out, but I have this friend who is really good at action scenes, Michael Livingston. He is also the namesake of Captain Livingston.

So, I pinged him in chat and we brainstormed through the scene until we came up with an sequence that worked. I have it for you but I am not kidding when I say that it is full of spoilers. I mean FULL of spoilers.

Giant, massive, spoilery, spoilers that give away all of the plot details in one giant lump of text.

But, I also think it is useful to see how an idea evolves and the things that go into shaping the ending. You’ll also note that there were things that I was planning to have happen, which didn’t actually make it into the final.

So if you are curious, click away to see the brainstorming session as it was recorded in chat six years ago.

But there are spoilers.


I mean it.

Spoiler Inside SelectShow
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11 thoughts on “What a brainstorming session looks like.”

  1. This is fantastic stuff, Mary. I love all the questions and picking it apart in the minutia, detail by detail.
    I’m having a bit of trouble untangling the ending to my own tale and seeing a part of your process close up has at least given me a plan of action to resolve it. Having someone to bounce ideas off of is something I need to take a closer look at it seems.

      1. I believe the internet has a phrase that can be re-purposed here. “Pics or it didn’t happen,” I believe it is….

  2. Oh no, you’ve ruined Captain Livingston’s rep by revealing this secret counsel! 😉

    Seriously though, this is pretty awesome. I’m curious, can you tell us how much of your version of Jane’s story Mr. Livingston had seen before this?

  3. What a delight to read this again after so long! I well remember that chat. It’s a testament to your wordsmithin’ skills that when I finally read the book I was STILL surprised at the ending.

    (And, as ever, thanks for the kind words.)

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