Monday, October 1, 2012

What To Do Before You Write

I am getting ready to join NaNoWriMo for the month of November.  So I am working hard on plotting the book, setting up characters, and figuring out the different settings I will be using.  This is the hardest book I have ever worked on.  This is a book I have been trying to write for over three years.  Maybe writing it now when I have to push through the writer's block and get some major stuff done each day is not a good idea, but that's what I'm doing.  This whole month of October I will be putting together a huge folder with everything I need inside.  I have never been so organized.  I'll let you know later if it works out for me or not.  Here is what I am doing:

1.  Major Outline:  In the past I have jotted down a quick outline in a notebook, sometimes making index cards to help me on my way.  That didn't work out for me this time.  I had to make an extensive outline.  First, I took the ideas for each scene (one or two sentences) and turned them into huge paragrpahs.  Second, I added even more detail to each, adding pieces of dialogue and the emotions the characters are dealing with.  I want this outline to be so complete that writing the actual prose turns out to be a walk in the park. 

2.  Character Sheets:  I always fill out character bios, but this time I'm taking it a bit farther.  I am writing first person bios, filling in detailed sheets, and interviewing the characters.  I want to know them better than I know my own mother.  By the time I start writing this book, I want to know without having to think about it exactly how my characters would react in any given situation.

3.  Setting Sheets:  Usually I just write and figure out my setting as I go along.  But this time I am filling out sheets on setting.  I want to know exactly what every room and every exterior place looks like down to the last details.     

Now, I have printed off all of this stuff and put the pages in protective sheets so I can place them in a nice binder.  I'll let you know in December how it worked out. 


Laurie, Caitlin and Meg said...

That sounds like a great idea! I think being organized can help with focus and cuts down on research time too. Good luck. Keep us posted on your word count:)

I think I'll try to be more organized with my Nano novel too. Thanks for the tips!


T. R. Graves said...

You are inspiring me! (✿◠‿◠)

Natasha Bennett said...

Good luck! I haven't gotten the nerve to write Nano but I might one of these years :)

K. C. Blake said...

Believe it or not, I didn't know what NaNoWriMo even was until three months ago. I'd heard people mention it, but I didn't bother to ask them about it.