Today, I launch the social experiment I mentioned in my first post. As I write my novel, I will post periodically about progress, problems, victories and headaches. It will be as though you are literally behind the scenes, not just watching a video about it. Furthermore, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with the process by leaving your comments and participating in polls. It will be good fun but, more than that, I think it will be a good tool for me to clamp down and get the work done. It’s so easy for a writer to procrastinate, playing a couple dozen games of Spider Solitaire before stoking one key. So I will set some rules for myself:
- No blogging until the current writing goal has been met
- No blogging until all writing has been checked against the outlines
- No blogging until all research (as applicable) has been done, checked, verified
- In the event of writer’s block or a missing muse, scrap all previous rules
Now, this entry is exempt from the rules, because I started blogging before I wrote, or even thought of, the rules. You might as well get used to the Evan Konnor logic system. It can, sometimes, be a little off the wall but it usually works for me.
I really should bring you up to speed on where things stand in the process since a lot of the preliminary work has been done before I had this bright idea.
I have done some extra studying on the craft of writing fiction. Since I trained as a journalist, I have been more inclined to tell the truth, so I opted to give my imagination a kick-start and learn what other writers have found helpful. I’ve also learned more about plotting – something that doesn’t happen in journalistic writing – and how to get the story across to the reader without telling but by showing instead. I’ve also brushed up on dialog because dialog and quotes are just not the same at all.
Armed with an arsenal of new knowledge, I set about the task of developing characters and plotting. I’ve completed character sketches for my main characters along with backstories and timelines. I won’t use all of this material, but it should provide us with lovable and hateable 3-dimensional characters. I have also completed a significant number of scene outlines and I feel comfortable that I can now get started on the creative task of actual writing. Now, as I work, new ideas will pop into my brain allowing me to complete later scene outlines as they evolve from the story telling. Getting the outlines down will keep me from forgetting them and thus getting lost.
All of this preliminary work should make rule #4 unnecessary. It remains to be seen just how many times I’ll have to fall back on it.
Let’s get started, shall I?