1. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    Do you chapterise as you write?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by OurJud, Aug 2, 2015.

    Just wondering how many of you write in chapters, as opposed to an unbroken, continuous story which you chapterise later.

    I tend to do the latter, but now wonder if breaking things up as I go along would help make the process less daunting and overwhelming.
     
  2. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    I always write in chapters. But I'm a very heavy planner, so it's important to me.

    I typically write out what I want to happen, scene by scene, chapter by chapter, until I have the entire story planned. Then I lay it out in the simplest terms possible, like this:

    1: Dinner with family, finds out about aunt
    2: Fight with sister, goes to the CZ
    3: Meets Lonnie, has lunch

    So on and so forth... It helps me. lol Not only does it keep me organized, but if I need to change something, I know exactly where it is, what chapter it's in, and how it could affect the rest of the story. Doesn't work for everyone though. If your solid block of writing works for you, then stick with it.
     
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  3. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    Do you edit a chapter once it's written or finish the whole thing then edit, @Lea`Brooks ?
     
  4. Lea`Brooks
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    Lea`Brooks Contributing Member Contributor

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    A little of both. I go back over what I wrote the day before, polish up what doesn't sound right, then continue writing. But I don't make anything "perfect." I'll go back once everything is finished and make it perfect then.
     
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  5. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    I am going to plan chapters, and use them to outline the story arc(s) that need to take place for the story I want to tell.
     
  6. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    That sounds like a great compromise. And it refreshes your mind with what you wrote the previous time, so the new writing flows forward.
     
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  7. Colactix
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    Colactix Member

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    I develop the chapters as I write. Generally I don't start out with a overly descriptive plan, if any at all. i find it more spontaneous and rewarding this way. Adding chapters as I'm going also helps me break the story up and not get carried away in writing needless pages.

    Although everyone's process is different. What works for one, might be hell for another. :)
     
  8. Daemon Wolf
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    Daemon Wolf Active Member

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    When I write the guideline of my story (as it helps when trying to write longer stories) I don't add in chapters and don't really focus on them. But when I sit down to write it out I just break it into chapters that make sense. Usually my chapters are only around 8-9 pages but I try my best to keep it under 10 pages and make sure to start and end at the right time.
     
  9. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I write in scenes. This is where Scrivener really shines for me as a writing platform because it facilitates this quirk of mine with such ease. Sometimes scenes come to me obviously strung one to the next, like pearls. Sometimes they don't.
     
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  10. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    I have Scrivener and there's a bit of a learning curve. Do you have any tutorial website or suggestions to look at to get up to speed? I did google but would appreciate a recommendation.
     
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  11. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I'll PM you so as not to derail the thread. :)
     
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  12. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    I write in scenes as well. A scene can be one or more chapters long. I edit as I go and I often revisit past pages and edit some more. Last night I edited one of my earliest scenes and found a change that made a huge difference.

    This was the old version:
    The bellows of nocturnal insects announced the growing darkness, letting the world know they owned the night. The familiar reverberations were like friends, talking to me as I walked the short distance back to my campsite. Sometimes I talked back to them.​

    And this is the new one:
    Back at my campsite the bellows of nocturnal insects announced the growing darkness, letting the world know they owned the night. Sometimes I carried on imaginary conversations with them. We made plans to conquer the world together.​

    Of course you might have to be me to enjoy the change. :)
     
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  13. Daemon Wolf
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    Daemon Wolf Active Member

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    AI personally prefer the older one. But idk the context of the peice so... Lol.
     
  14. Renee J
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    Renee J Contributing Member

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    I write in chapters. I also have a different document for each chapter. I find it easier to keep track of parts of the story this way. The book has two POV characters and I switch POV at the new chapter.
     
  15. Song
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    Song Active Member

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    I have the basic story and all it's arcs planned out before I start. That way I can work out if a story is going to work before I even committ six months of writing to it. That doesn't mean the story doesn't change a bit but it does keep it going in a direction I want it to.
     
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  16. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    [sidetrack] Thanks. I'm glad the older version works as opposed to sounding dorky. Both versions have different connotations. In the first one, my character is lonely (which she is) and in the second version, she has big dreams (which she also does have). [/sidetrack]
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2015
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  17. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    Your planning method makes perfect sense, and I wish I could do it that way. The problem I have is that I can't simply sit there and come up with the entire plot of my novel. I have to write in order to trigger my imagination for the rest of my story.

    With me, rather than, this happens, followed by this and this, and ends with this. It's a case of that happened... ahh, so then this will happen...

    It's a gamble, and if I ever reach the end of a novel I'll be able to report back and tell you if it works.
     
  18. GingerCoffee
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    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

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    My writing process works the same way, @OurJud. The story grows from a skeletal framework.
     
  19. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    If I have so much as the backbone before starting I'm lucky :meh:
     
  20. Daemon Wolf
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    Daemon Wolf Active Member

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    It is a pretty good method. I use it myself. It helps to have an ending to work towards though. Otherwise I wouldn't know where I would go with my story.
     
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  21. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I chapterize as I write. AND to make it easier to overview later I also make chapter headings so I can easily switch between chapters and move them around without having to copy and paste stuff. I write in word, by the way.
     
  22. Aaron DC
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    Aaron DC Contributing Member

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    I hope you do manage to. It will be worth reading.
     
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  23. OurJud
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    OurJud Contributing Member Contributor

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    You can come here again :D
     
  24. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    When I do a novel I usually outline a bit and section it into what feels like natural breaks in the action or scenes.
    I try not to over analyze anything or figure too much out - that allows me to follow new threads when I'm writing and yet still get to where I'm going.
    I don't think I've ever tried to do a novel without making chapters before hand except for when I was doing Nanowrite and even then it felt like I was making mini chapters along the way.
    My thought process for novels and short stories is very different.
     
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  25. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    The bare basics of my manuscript are:

    Chapter One (the beginning.)

    Chapter XYZ (to be numbered later. Often, there are a lot of these.)

    Chapter Finale (starting from the point of no return/everything had reached a peak to the very end of the story.)
     

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