Thoughts so far

17, February,2011

  • Formal planning takes time.
  • I’m finding Ywriter very useful.
  • I wonder if all the planning will suck the spontaneity out of the writing when I finally start.
  • I have avoided numerous character dead ends and potential re-writes already.
  • Going for a walk is a better way to sort out plot points than banging out stream of consciousness crap on the keyboard.
  • Reading books that have almost, but not quite, got it right, is useful when I am plotting.
  • Research can hijack my mind and turn a good simple  story into a crappy tentacled plot.
  • Selective re-listening to a range of writing podcasts has helped me make decisions about structure and characters.

Not an amusing list and possibly only helpful to me, but there you go.

I will constuct a list of podcast episodes I used to help me plan out the story.  “Cameron’s online guide to not f**king up before you start.” 



I’ve started again

1, February,2011

I have finally abandoned the morass of text that is my manuscript.

I started using Ywriter to try to organize all the dud sub plots and orphaned jokes. Instead of pulling it together I started doing a whole new series of ‘what it’s. What if I gave the secondary character his own sub plot, what if the hero used a slingshot to win the final battle, what if the dog was psychic, what if…WTF.

The whole thing needs to be re-plotted and rewritten. It has become a writing exercise. A 10 year, 120,000 word writing exercise.

So it’s time to send it to the trunk and trot out the next story.

This time I’m plotting the whole thing out. I’m going to have a plan for the boring bits that I don’t want to write, and the jokes will align with the plot (rather than the other way around). I want to get the whole thing done in 12 months. I’ve had my play, it’s time to have a serious crack at it. I’m not expecting to produce anything publishable, just something structured and competent – and finished.

I don’t think the million words are supposed to be all rewrites of the one story. Most published writers knock out 3 or 4 (or 5) unpublished novels before they get it right.

So, time to start number 2.