1. Daydream
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    Daydream Contributing Member Contributor

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    Not getting the feeling that i've finished my plan..

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Daydream, Jul 11, 2011.

    Hey so I should be ready to start writing since I've sorted the plan for my novel. I've created my characters, plot, story and am pretty sure I've been quite thorough. Problem is even though I have everything to start my novel, it doesn't feel like it. I keep getting the feeling that i'm missing small details or have to much detail so i'm constantly going back to my plan and trying to change it. This will be my first novel...dunno if i'm nervous or something, or whether I want it to be perfect. I could've started writing it 2 weeks ago, but because of this I haven't done any work on it except for when I get my plan out to change something -.-

    Is this some form of writers block, anxiety to start or me just being fussy? Anyone else had this happen too?
     
  2. Solar
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    Solar Contributing Member Contributor

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    Have you done research?
     
  3. Gigi_GNR
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    Gigi_GNR Guys, come on. WAFFLE-O. Contributor

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    You have anxiety, and that's completely normal. But what you need to do is just WRITE. You can always go back and change it later.
     
  4. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    What Gigi said.

    It's not possible to plan every detail before you start writing, because the process of writing is dynamic in nature. By that I mean that as you write, your characters will grow and develop in ways that you will not necessarily have foreseen. And as they grow, they will likely cause you to think of new story ideas, subplots and possibly even additional new characters that you can and should use to further enrich your story.

    I find this aspect of writing to be the truly joyful part. It's as if my characters are revealing themselves to me and telling me their story. And on days when they really pour themselves out to you, it will likely feel like you can't keep up. And I guarantee that when you finally finish your story, it will be different from what you originally planned.

    Good luck and enjoy!
     
  5. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Sounds like you need to get out of your own way. Your attitude is killing your writing. Stop worrying and WRITE. You have a story, a plot, characters, a plan, so what's stopping you?

    You are.

    Stop stopping yourself and write, dammit!
     
  6. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    Sounds like perfectionist procrastination. Yes, there will be things missing from your plan; I don't think that it's possible to anticipate every possible thing that you might realize while writing. So I say, just write. And if you can't keep yourself from tweaking the plan instead of writing, I'd say give the plan to a friend to lock away for a month, and write from memory.
     
  7. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    And number 5.... Just write. Normal. You're fine. Butt in the chair. Daydream, stop daydreaming :p
     
  8. e(g)
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    e(g) Member

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    I have a similar problem. So maybe if I give you advice that I can't hear for myself, you will give me some advice that you can't hear for yourself and we'll get by somehow.

    You have your story and your plan--great. Now you have to start a daily schedule. Write 300 words a day. That's about one page in a book. And do that every day. And when you do it, then tell yourself that's all you have to do. And if you don't have the courage for three hundred words, then tell yourself you don't and write at least one sentence.

    Do this every day, no matter what. Find the private time to do it and do it every single day. In about 30 days, you will have the habit formed and you won't be so worried to write.

    I like the term used by Chicken Feet, "Perfectionist Procrastination." If you never write your book, at least you will never have failed at writing your book, and to us writers, our whole identity is in our ability to write good stories. Failing to do so is a direct reflection on us and our existence. When you think about it, it's an almost overbearing responsibility.

    We want to be intelligent, witty, and entertaining, and that's a pretty tall order.

    Now I think I've scared myself out of writing again! :(

    Well, one page at a time, I suppose. What else can we do? If we do nothing, we don't even get our failure.
     
  9. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you do nothing, all that planning has been for nothing...

    I think many people have 'intentions' to write, but don't do it in the end.

    Don't worry about your plan, of it being 'complete - writing should be a journey where things unfold as you work and push on. I know once I get into the flow of writing, it is at that point that new ideas and possible plot twists come to me.

    Don't worry about having to be 'perfect'. I know, easier said than done. We all want to be 'good'. But first drafts are never going to be perfect. In my silly days, I thought all you had to do was churn out however-many words and that's that. The revising and rewriting is when you polish your work. Anything you don't like, you can always get rid off.

    Just start writing. :)
     
  10. LostInFiction
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    LostInFiction Senior Member

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    I love this little nugget of advice. I'm currently trying to build on the first draft of my novel which is significantly shorter than the finished novel needs to be and I'm finding it tricky to write in volume and find myself adding just a few hundred words a day. This is mainly because I'm writing very specifically around the established narrative but it is annoyingly slow. It was nice to see someone give the advice to see 300 words as a page. Completing a page of a novel is a positive achievement and a concrete step forward. I'll bear this in mind as I continue with my mission!

    Thanks e (g) :)

    Yes! I had a plan brewing for about two years before I actually starting writing for real. I will say that I have no issue with that either. At the time I was excited by the novel plan and kept changing and improving it and at the end of the process I had a chapter-by-chapter plan, in some cases a synopsis or section of action, dialogue etc, to a very different and much more exciting story than I started with. So, my question would be do you feel you are getting anywhere with your plan by going back to it? If you are then why worry? Enjoy the creative process. If not, maybe force yourself to get writing and you'll get the inspiration that you may be waiting for, or maybe you'll see everything is great anyway and be well on your way to writing your first novel! All the best to you Daydream. :)
     
  11. Batgoat
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    Batgoat Senior Member

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    Have you considered that in your mad quest with planning, you might have over planned and instead of actually allowed the story to grow organically, you've now channeled it in such a way that there is only one WAY for it to go... therefore bringing unto yourself a fear of failure?

    Someone once asked me, "How can you write so much?"
    I replied, "One word at a time."

    Even if the first sentence is crap, you need to start somewhere.
     
  12. Daydream
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    Daydream Contributing Member Contributor

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    Oh yeh done alot of that, maybe to much ><

    Part of me feels like i'm ready to write since i've got my plan sorted, but sometimes I feel like im missing details or my story needs to have more obstacles. Part of my story involes alot of travel so I keep wanting to create obstacles along the way to make it more interesting. One thing you did mention which I didn't do is a chapter by chapter plan. Does everyone do this? I've always only written short stories where I never had to do this, but this is my first novel. Should I be doing this too? Thanks for the advice :)

    Hmm maybe, but along with the feeling that i keep needing to add more detail, I also have the feeling that I have to much...if that makes sense lol. I think as a few people have said this is some form of procrastination. Only thing i'm now wandering about the the chapter by chapter plan which I haven't done.
     
  13. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    How about you start with something different than this story? Maybe just a silly one that won't ever see the light of day. If I'm stuck or don't want to write a particular story, I write something different. Most of that never gets finished, but I'm writing and that's what matters. You get experience and you can experiment to find what you like and discover your style.
     
  14. LostInFiction
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    LostInFiction Senior Member

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    I didn't ever plan to synopsis every chapter, I was just jotting down ideas but then some parts of the story seemed very clear with specific dialogue or action and as I jotted this down I stumbled into the chapter synopsis situation. The whole thing was about 5000 words in total. This really helped me think through the story, add detail and solve issues with the plot. I appreciate this would be planning overkill for many writers. I'm a newbie to this :D
    The plan had a limited use and now I have a basic draft it is a thing of the past. I would plan a future novel using the same technique.
    I would be interested to hear if this approach has or hasn't worked for others....
     
  15. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    You have an outline which is good but don't worry about the rest, the details, because they will come to you while writing, that is the nice part. you don't need to plan every chapter precisely, leave some room for creativity and improvisation. I find that is the best way to go. :) and don't be afraid that it won't turn out perfect right away, it almost never does. that is what rewriting is for.
     

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