Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Newsie Tuesdie...and a Tip!

Alright, so today I don't have any breath-taking news to relay.  Everything is on schedule and coming along fine in the editing department.  I'm in the middle of having a book trailer made, which will  be up for you all to view in a bit (AHHHHH!!! So excited about that!)  And I'm thinking that probably around mid-July I'll be able to post the first chapter or two for you all to read.  (AHHHHH!!! I'm really excited about that too!)

Other than those tid-bits of excitement, I'm afraid I don't have anything else, and probably won't for a couple more Tuesdays.  So, in the meantime, when I don't have news, I'll use Tuesdays as a chance to relay some of the things I've learned through my whole process of writing Cobbogoth--things I wish I had known when I began. 

Today I'm going to talk about outlining--or as they call it in movie making, storyboarding.  An outline is really just a skeletal map of your story from point A to point B to Point C, etc.  Now, it took me 3 years to really master my own version of this process, so in the event that I might save someone else the time and tears, this is how I outline my books:

Step 1: When I'm just starting out with an idea, I really just write and write and write.  I get all of my best ideas with a pen (a G2 Pilot fine point black pen to be exact) in my hand.  When I've got enough of an idea, I'll move on to step 2.

Step 2:  I break my story up into a beginning, middle and an end--3 parts.  I spend a bit of time on each of these parts to make sure that they are full and if I do it right, I start to see a beginning, middle and an end in each part.  This is when I know it's time to move one to step 3.

Step 3:  I break my three parts into three parts each.  This gives me 9 parts of my story.  When I have all of the mechanics of these nine parts worked out, then I begin to see where natural chapter breaks might happen.  This leads me to step 4.

Step 4:  Step four is where I create my scene and chapter outlines. 

So, there you have it.  This is my process.  You can use sticky notes, or cork boards.  I have a friend who does the sticky notes on her bedroom wall. 

If you too are a writer, how do you outline your stories?  Or do you outline at all? 

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