1. C.A.Cruise
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    C.A.Cruise New Member

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    Where do I begin?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by C.A.Cruise, Sep 5, 2010.

    I can't even decide if this story should be fantasy or science fiction, all I have is a basic Idea, I been jotting things down but things keep changing. I know it will take time, but any suggestions on where to begin?

    I have the main character and his companion thought out some, and the plot to some degree.
     
  2. Speedy
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    Speedy Contributing Member Contributor

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    Gee. I feel like face palming!

    How about you go Romance?

    Seriously though, how about you write the story and let the writing itself figure out what it wants to be.

    I personally don't go out of my way and write my stories so its specifically any genre. It just is.
     
  3. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    You have your characters and you have enough plot. So start writing! Nothing gets the creative juices going like actually writing. You'll figure out the rest of your plot much more quickly and easily if you're actually writing the story than you will if you're just making notes.

    Don't worry if you have to restart the thing several times. My biggest problem is figuring out where to start, and I usually get it wrong once or twice or thrice or fice before I get it right. But that's still a useful process - after making all those mistakes, I have a VERY good idea of how to do it right!

    And do NOT worry about genre. Who cares? Write the story. After it's done you can worry about sticking a label on it. And after it's done, you can figure out what market it's for. But whatever you do, don't tie yourself up in knots worrying about genre while you're doing the writing.
     
  4. SilverWolf0101
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    SilverWolf0101 Active Member

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    To put it bluntly... YOU'VE GOT AN IDEA, NOW USE IT!!!

    I really wouldn't worry about the genre, I write my stories then I try to figure out what genre they would best be suited as. All those notes you take are good (I actually write down ideas for further on in the story) but if you don't have a story to work them into, they're not going to go any place.

    All you have to do now is start writing. Worry about everything else later.
     
  5. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    Agreed, trying to decide on a genre before you write could cause you to try and force yourself to fit certain elements of that genre (i.e. certain types of creatures/names, common themes, etc) which would lead to overused cliches.
     
  6. Shinn
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    Shinn Banned

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    You have an idea, now write and write and write! :D
     
  7. TerraIncognita
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    TerraIncognita Aggressively Nice Person Contributor

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    It's like overdoing the planning of characters. If you decide your story must be any specific genre it will just box you in. Just write and see where it goes. :)
     
  8. theSkaBoss
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    theSkaBoss Member

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    The people who are telling you not to conform to a genre are probably right. I had to figure that out the hard way. By telling myself I was writing "fantasy," I demanded that my world not have somewhat modern machinery or innovations. This inhibited the flow of my story and didn't actually make sense with my premise. I've learned and reworked it to allow for myself to write how I wanted to write it, and it flows much better now.
     
  9. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    You don't want to fall into the Cliche Trap. You know, relying on elves and orcs (in a let's-rip-off-of-Tolkein way) for fantasy, and being way too blandly similar to Star Wars and stuff for SciFi.

    Write what you want, who cares about genre? Use YOUR ideas, not the ideas that are "crucial for" a certain genre.
     
  10. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    I agree just write your story and your characters will tell you where they want to go.

    My story started out as an Action Adventure Adult story. After my first attempts of writing it morphed itself into a fantasy that created it's own world. It then started to tell it from the point of view of the seventeen year old which has turned it into a Young Adult book.
     
  11. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    And there's always Science Fantasy if your plot is more complicated than they're giving you credit for though you are feeling conflicted about what way to take it. There's always a middle ground, and I certainly did not just invent it. :p

    I find the best starting place is a conversation - if you aren't sure of anything else, you can jump in with a discussion of the plot that 9/10 times won't even make it into the finished thing, but just gives you a starting point. You'll probably change it tons, but you need to get things moving, and conversation is a good way to start thinking through things like character and stuff.
     
  12. KittyGoesRawr
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    KittyGoesRawr Member

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    Why classify it? Just write it. :3 Have fun with it! Make it fantasy, science fiction, romance!
     
  13. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    no one can make up your story but you... if you want to turn out something ugly like a camel, or ridiculous like a platypus then go on trying to write by committee...

    but if you want to turn out stories that you can take credit for as your very own, stop asking and start writing!
     
  14. C.A.Cruise
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    C.A.Cruise New Member

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    Wow.. never actually thought of just doing that.. I tried to. but then I just thought I should have everything figured out first.. THANKS FOR THE ENCOURAGEMENT...
     
  15. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    I mean certain things you DO want to take care of first -- like what's the general direction the plot moves in, key scenes, climax, what happens in the chapter you're about to write, etc.

    But categorizing a genre? Forget it....:)
     
  16. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    although don't automatically knock the committee or writing partner idea many enduring stories through the TV have come by committee :) You might just have something shaped like a Monty Python or a Birds of a Feather:)

    Just being able to bounce off someone can make a huge difference to a storyline.
     
  17. Islander
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    Islander Contributing Member Contributor

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    And many horrible movies seem to have been written by committee...
     
  18. Karl C. Lewis
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    Karl C. Lewis Member

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    ok so basically everyone is saying "write it!" haha. and i agree, although i am going to add something to it and that is make a blueprint. this will help you keep your basic ideas on paper so you don't have your plot and characters losing their way down the rabbit hole.

    Situation:
    Obstacle/Antagonist:
    Internal Conflict:
    Subplots:
    Time Span:
    Setting:
    Resolution:


    Do this and THEN write and don't STOP writing until you have FINISHED IT COMPLETELY (your first draft)! Don't stop and post your first chapter on this forum and ask for suggestions and how you can edit it. DON"T DO THAT! ugh! it drives me crazy when people do that because it TOTALLY in ALL WAYS stops their ideas from developing. Your goal is to write as fast as you can without worrying one bit on how well you are writing...there WILL be time to in the editing process.

    Also, once you do figure out what kind of genre your book is start reading like a maniac those type of books. Like at LEAST 20. Reading is THE BEST tool when you are trying to write. Also, read books on how to write such as "Thanks but This Isn't for Us" by Jessica Page Morrell and "Bird by Bird" by Anne Lamott. You absolutely NEED to read these two books before you start writing or while you are writing. If you want to write a book that people will want to read. I suggest you do these things.

    GOOD LUCK! =)
     
  19. Perdondaris
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    Perdondaris Member

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    And most probably weren't...?
     
  20. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    the truth is, all movies are 'written by committee'!

    sure, there may be a single screenwriter's name in the credits as 'screenplay by' but the director always has some say in what happens to it all between the submitted script and the shooting script... and there could be any number of other [uncredited] studio writers who contributed and/or changed lines/scenes... even the lead actors often get in the act, by adlibbing and/or insisting on line/scene changes...

    so, i doubt you could show me a single movie that wasn't written by committee!

    but that doesn't usually work for prose... successful co-authored novels are rare... niven/pournelle did well together, but also write great stuff on their own... i'd love to see a list of other really good writing teams in the prose camp, as i can't think of any right now...
     
  21. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    Many books with "dual authors" are largely an apprenticeship situation, in which a well-established author lets a lesser-known author work with his or her characters/settings, and the senior author's contribution is mostlly making sure the partner treats the loaned elements appropriately and follows a style compatible with that of the original works.

    A lot of the "writing by committee" we speak against here is not collaborative at all. It is "tell me what I should write," essentially a parasitic relationship for which the host gets no recognition.
     
  22. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    There's Woody Allen, who produces, directs, writes, and stars in his own movies. My guess is that he has final say on what goes into the script, so his movies are probably written only by him.
     
  23. k.little90
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    k.little90 Active Member

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    I'd say just kind of go with the flow. Why worry about what genre it is if it's not even written? To me that seems like a big waste of energy.

    Write it, read it, and place it. In that order ;)
     
  24. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    same could probably be said of oliver stone and george lucas... but i guess we could consider their various selves to be a 'committee'! ;)
     

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