1. MrsT88

    MrsT88 Member

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    Planning and preparation?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by MrsT88, Jun 18, 2013.

    How do you all prepare to start writing a story?
    What methods of planning do you use?
    I need to get organised to make it easier to focus.
     
  2. ArielleRahmani

    ArielleRahmani New Member

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    In my opinion, you don't really have to plan on when to write or begin a story it natural would come to mind. Whatever you feel seems exotic and readable then you should just jot it down on a piece of paper then at the end organize your story in chronological order. It would be best to use a clean sheet of paper each time when jotting down new ideas or thoughts. Maybe from those thoughts a amazing book is awaiting to be published or written on paper. Just keep writing, never put down the pencil, because once you write it is impossible to stop!!! And if you want feedback upon your chapters just post them here.

    ~GOOD LUCK
     
  3. Thomas Kitchen

    Thomas Kitchen Proofreader in the Making Contributor

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    I start by trying to write the whole story of my novel into a single sentence, such as "Old woman goes on long journey to find true love", or something of that nature. Then I expand it to a paragraph, then two. I usually stop there so I don't know everything that happens during my story (I like to be surprised!), but if you want to have a detailed plan then go ahead; every writer is different.

    I also have a character profile of all the main characters, but again I don't go into much detail as I like to get to know them from writing my book. If you need a map then draw one, even if the reader won't see it - it's so you can navigate your world and rooms without contradicting yourself with something you said earlier.

    For me that's about it, but as I say, every writer is different. I would suggest, however, that if you are a beginner/this is your first major piece of writing, you should flesh out the details a little more, just so you stay on the right track. Good luck, and have fun writing! :D
     
  4. Garball

    Garball Banned Contributor

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    Make a writing hole for yourself, a place where there are no distractions. You are going to have to force yourself to sit down and write at times.
     
  5. Mithrandir

    Mithrandir New Member

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    It really depends on what you're writing. If I'm going to do something with the scope of say, A Song of Ice and Fire, then I'm going to plan a lot more than if I'm just going to write a couple scenes set at a local coffee shop.
     
  6. EdFromNY

    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    ^This.

    I am currently writing a historical novel. The only way to do that coherently is to know which time periods I am reflecting, who the main characters are within each time period, what the main conflicts are (and how they related to the historically significant events of the time), how they are connected to the characters in the other time periods, and linking it all to the present day characters who are key to the whole story. I have thus far filled one five-subject spiral notebook and the better part of a second.

    For other projects, my planning/organizing has ranged from none (starting with a character and going from there) to a skeletal timeline, major events and major characters (and their "arcs") sketched out in advance, and an age chart for characters, and the traditional triangle diagram for my one play. My progression through these rather limited planning devices has grown as I proceed from one project to another, and I would recommend at least some aspect of planning before you start if you are writing a novel or a play. "Following where the writing takes you" may feel good, but in my experience it does not yield particularly good results. YMMV.
     
  7. MrsT88

    MrsT88 Member

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    Thanks all, I felt like I needed a plan as I'm not entirely sure of where the story is going but I have a beginning and know vaguely (just!) what I want to happen but after reading you're comments it appears that is completely natural. I get the whole "you won't stop writing" thing, it was 3am the other morning when I finally put the pencil down, I daren't put it down whilst I was in full flow!
     
  8. Lea`Brooks

    Lea`Brooks Contributor Contributor

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    I use the snowflake method of writing. I found it online and it's pretty brilliant for semi-organized people. I also bought a Dummy guide to writing by the same made who invented the snowflake guide, so it's pretty informative. Good luck. :)
     
  9. MrsT88

    MrsT88 Member

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    Thanks I will have a look at these :) Once I have a bit of a clearer direction it will hopefully be a little easier to get organised and have a bit of a plan. Off right this minute for new notepads and picking up the pen tonight :)
     
  10. shadowwalker

    shadowwalker Contributor Contributor

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    I'm not organized at all to begin with. I start writing and just make sure that everything makes sense based on what already happened.
     
  11. MrsT88

    MrsT88 Member

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    Yes that's what I've done up to now only I now feel like I have a paper overload, ideas' everywhere etc but I now get that this is normal, right? Everything will fall into place as I continue? I guess I work best in chaos like this because I am never organised in anything.
     
  12. Anthony Martin

    Anthony Martin Active Member

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    I work with short stories, at the moment. When I get an idea I know I want to build out into a story, I mull it over to tease out some details in my mind. At that point, I give myself four hours or so to sit down and get it all out, rough as hell, onto the page. All at once. Start to finish. After that, it's up to me and any kind soul willing to read my work to shape the story into its final form.
     
  13. Lea`Brooks

    Lea`Brooks Contributor Contributor

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    Wow, that's pretty intense. I've never heard of it being done like that before.

    My biggest problem with writing is the actual writing part. lol Actually, I think my problem is I chose the most difficult kind of story to start writing. lol I'm doing a YA fantasy, but along with creating the story, I have to build a fantasy world, make my own races and mythological creatures (their appearance, abilities, etc), cross match those races to figure out what mixed breeding would look like, kind of work out a language. -.- Too much work for my first novel.

    But I have all these other short stories that I want to write. Just about everything I dream I'm able to turn into a story idea, so I have about ten of them I've been mulling over all at the same time. I've been trying to use the snowflake method for all of those two, until my most recent where I'm just writing without any plan. I've never considered just spitting it out like that and perfectly it later. That's actually pretty brilliant. lol I may have to try that!


    Thanks for sharing!
     
  14. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i don't... at least not at first... i always just sit down and start writing...

    if i'm working on a book that has a complicated timeline, or too many subplots to keep straight in my head, i'll take a break and do up a 'casual' outline at the point where one becomes necessary...
     
  15. Anthony Martin

    Anthony Martin Active Member

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    I use this method becuase, in the past, my writing would be mired in the false expectation that the first draft should be precise, something excellent. I should have listened to the wise words of one of the greats:

    "The first draft of anything is shit."
     

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