Tag Archives: brainstorm

Storyboarding Like A Boss!

Now that I have decided what my manuscript is and how to focus my energy, the next step is outlining my novel. I  know that I shouldn’t know everything that happens in my book, but it’s important to understand where my story is going. I had no clue how to plan my book. Should I go by months? weeks? holidays? There is definitely no right answer to how long a novel should last. My characters are the only ones who can decide it for me. That and Doctor Who. When I chose a six month time-frame for the novel, it never occurred to me that it would span that length of time. It was Doctor Who that helped me to pick the resolution to my story. Why not end the story on Christmas and in England?!

 

The only difference is that my Christmas ending won’t be involving aliens or terrifying space ships. Yet, Christmas seems like the perfect time to resolve a lot of bad juju over the course of the novel. The easiest part about deciding the timing of my story was playing off my character. The most important time for a 13-year-old girl is the summer, and I wanted to showcase how important that is to your childhood. Not only that, but starting school in a new country is a pivotal point for my character to  experience. I was compelled to purchase a white erase board, so that I can write all of major notes.  The clean, glossy surface was just what I needed to put my novel into perspective, to know where it is heading.

I’m not trying to impose my new ideas or that it will ultimately effective at writing my novel. However, it does help organize your thoughts as well as visualize them. Whether it be brainstorming a new idea or plotting a half finished one, the goal is the same. Get your ideas in the most organized way you can be so that the story comes out the best.  I’ll share with you, my story board in case you don’t know where to start. On the right, I put a time line that had dates or months with small summaries on the left. Then, I placed themes for the overall story, and a list of characters that have been mentioned so far. Pictures I found from my research and a perfectly chosen actress from a casting website helps me visualize what I see me in my head. It may do that for you.

 

Please comment if you already have a story board, pictures too! And if this inspires you to make one share what comes from my suggestion 🙂

 

Happy reading/writing!

6 Comments

Filed under Idea of the Day

Death by Revision

Nightmare to read if you're not the writer and sometimes even if you are!

Before you judge or scream in agreement, hear me out. For my entire life, I have walked the unorthodox path of revising as you go. I was told many times (too many to count) that I must brainstorm (writing that down), then come up with a first draft, and continuing on this cycle until I have 15 piles of drafts before the final copy. Now the age of computers came along and made this a slightly more organized process. You can now put all of your drafts in a neat little folder on the computer instead of on your desk.

At the same time, the generation growing up with computers became reliant on things like spell check, delete button, and backspace. Yes, technically we can do that by hand, but there is something liberating about being able to alter your text in a split second. If I were to use none of those my sentences would look horrendour and I would never be able to delete thw words I didn’t want to say…^See!! Backspace is a gift from above bringing endless joys of the modern writer.

wish you had it for everyday life? Sometimes!

To make matters worse, the perfectionist in me doesn’t allow me to wait until I’m done writing a sentence before I’ve figured out another way to write it.  Inventive? Sure.  Efficient? Not really. It doesn’t help one bit that I keep going back over everything I’ve just written rather than moving forward.  I would love to have the dozens of drafts that some writers have stocked up.

So, the process for my short story “Somewhere” is going pretty damn slow. I have revisions from my mentor, a plan for improvements to the story, and not enough time in the day.  The focus of my revisions is on getting inside the head of my characters. But how do I get inside the head of a character who is supposed to be me? I mean, I should know myself, right? Apparently, an alternate version of myself is a lot harder to tap than what I thought.

I have learned so much about my fears and expectations for myself. It’s hard to imagine my life without writing. It opens so many doors for me to discover things about myself. I hope my character develops the more I revise, but I have more hope for my own growth. Writing is definitely the best way to learn about yourself without meaning to.

Happy reading/writing!

6 Comments

Filed under Idea of the Day