Where do these thoughts come from?

So, I'm writing a Salieri scene.

By the way, I just want to put it out there that the following only happens when I'm writing about Salieri or Montiere. Just to let you know.

Anyway, I'm writing a Salieri scene. I have a rhythm for Salieri by now, and I first listen to his playlist and tip my head back, closing my eyes. Then I draft some pieces of dialogue. Something like this:

I never rise before noon
The nights keep me busy
Daybreak "Sorry, did I touch a nerve?"

I just cut and pasted this from a working document for Chapter Fourteen. I call this process sketching. It's usually word lists, quips of dialogue... Whatever I can wring from my imagination. After I think I've sketched a scene, I move onto fleshing the scene out.

With Salieri, the first thing that comes to me is dialogue, but Sal is a guy where pacing is important. He can dance, he can spot a true musician in a crowd, and he spends his days bent over a screen making people sound gorgeous. So when he speaks, he packs a punch into a single word, and his body has to match it. He's incredibly conscious of his body, so that's matched when I'm stitching and fleshing out his scenes.


“Well, I never do big meetings outside, and I never rise before noon,” said Salieri, idly examining his flawless fingernails. He gave Mabel a lazy glance over the tops of his nails. “The nights of Los Angeles keep me busy.”

And there's the final line. I'm still dissatisfied with the fact that "nails" appears twice at the end of back to back sentences, but... Oh well. That's just the way it is. 

Anyway, back to what only happens to me when I write about Salieri or Montiere. Okay. I have these moments where I'm in deep. By deep I mean that I'm in this strange state of mind, like a submerged meditation. It's not that strange, I guess, but when I'm trying to figure out what they're saying, how they think, it's like I'm wandering inside another mind that I've found within myself. And if you come and tap me on the shoulder, I probably won't have even noticed you coming up. 

So, I'm in this deep place trying to picture everything, hear everything. I suppose it's like creating a film in your imagination. I can see Salieri at his desk, the charcoal walls, neon lights... all sorts of little details I never include. I never mention the color of his tie, or the fact that his suit is always buttoned. But I'm trying to sort out what he's saying, why he's saying it, and how it affects those around him. (Because he's conscious of that too.) And frankly, Sal might as well be in another imaginative universe.  He's a little older, a little more idealistic and cold when it comes to affection, but he's loyal. He's inwardly passionate and insecure, sensitive to a frankly ridiculous degree, but he never goes on the defensive—which makes him different from most people—because he's so good at keeping on the offensive. 

He bold, sexy, and while he's calculating, he's definitely passionate. And, well, I'm not. Haha. So I'm writing Salieri and things feel to be going smoothly, and then something pops up in my imagination that surprises me. Catches me off guard. 

And then I write it and see it on the page, and I kind of want to delete it because it makes me look creepy (Montiere) or like a bit of a perv (Sal). But it's unexpected in a good way. 

To me at least.