Scrivener. Although I still make use of paper, I keep my entire outline in Scrivener. I didn’t for the story I wrote before my current one. I kept them on index cards. Then I got sick and didn’t write for a month. And misplaced my cards. Scariest week of my life, thinking I was going to have to recreate that outline.Read More →

Then 12.19.08 The Importance of Pre-Writing I tried looking at pictures. Incidentally, Apartment Therapy is an awesome site.  So I bought a graph paper pad and I just drew the dance studio/apartment in no time.  I then described the way the rooms looked.  I included whoever’s viewpoint popped into my head, because different people see different things.  This helps me in two ways: 1) I can visualize these important places and the events that took place there easier and 2) I’ve got ready made description when I write scenes in those places. I was amazed at how much such simple pre-writing work actually ignited my imagination.Read More →

Then 09.17.2008 Structural Integrity, Baby When I start a story, I figure out pretty quick what that first turning point is going to be and where the plot (and subplots) will have to get to for it to happen. I’m a pantsy plotter. That also sets me down the road of “What happens next?” Well, the whole world just turned on it’s side–for good or bad, or both–and people (characters) are going to be scrambling to figure out how this new world works, where they fit in it, and how the heck they get to their goal now. Don’t think of it as outlining, whichRead More →

A look at me and the synopsis through three posts spread out over time. Why they’re hard, what I learned, and how it can help you.Read More →

Then 03.18.2008 G to the M to the freaking C I bought GMC by Debra Dixon. It’s genius, I’d heard, and it’s true. It’s like having someone explain brain surgery in a book you can read in a day or two, and you finish and say, “Duh.” Before I go on, I’d like to point out that used copies can go for more then $40 on Amazon. I love Amazon, nothing against Amazon, but you can purchase the book from the publisher for $19.95. Worth every dime, btw. If you really want to know how useful it is, just google GMC and Dixon. You’ll findRead More →

Then: 01.22.2008 Finis. Sort of. I have finished the first rewrite on the first act of my fist novel. All those firsts, they just kind of sing disaster, don’t they? And yet, oh my god. I felt the same rush I did finishing the thing. The first act, about 140 pages, needed a lot of work. It was mainly written back when I had little to no clue. At all. There was infodump! There were scenes with NO conflict! None. Just… here’s an event. And another. And another. They serve no purpose, but… there they are! Most importantly, though, I was extremely intimidated by doingRead More →

Then: 10.25/2007 10 Ways to Unblock Writer’s Block I know, in a logical manner, that writer’s block isn’t a real, insurmountable thing. It’s a lot of possible twists, in your work and in your life, that manifests as, “I don’t want to.” Or sometimes, “I can’t. I really, really think maybe… I can’t!” But what it comes down to is your imagination, or maybe your muse, telling you, “This isn’t working for me.” Here’s what I do when uninspiration strikes: 1. Read through it. Read what you’ve already written. Read your notes. Make more notes. It won’t be long before your heroine will say, “YouRead More →