Unofficial Guest Post (or perhaps a Guest Link?)

I woke up late today and I was going to hammer down a post before it got any later.

But then Chuck Wendig over at Terribleminds.com answered a question I asked him via Tumblr and really it’s better than anything I can come up with today.

So get over there for your daily dose of blog wisdom if you haven’t already.

 

Chuck Wendig Exhorts You To Care Less.

 

Can’t really put it any better than that.

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A Tiny Update and Not So Tiny Excerpt (BEASTS: Chapter One)

I’m facing an interesting dilemma.

I feel good. I feel great.  I’m no longer alone. I’m living in a wonderful home with a loving family. Everything’s fantastic!

And I’m hardly getting any writing done because of it.

I’ve read it before how comfort can be deadly. I’m seeing first hand how that can be true. I’m also realizing just how much visualizing and fantasying your dream coming true is also dangerous.

Because feeling like I already have everything I wanted means I don’t feel any urge to do anything to get it, because in my head I already have it. Tricky, eh?

That said, I’m not giving in without a fight. I may have missed a week of blog posts, but I finally finished the first draft of the first chapter of my YA novel, BEASTS, which I’ve been working on since early February.

Needless to say, this is a cause for celebration.

So since today is Monday and that means Excerpt day, in order to make up for my unannounced absence, here is the entire chapter in all its flawed glory.

Who knows how much it’ll change when I finally send it off to agents (hopefully within a decade), but I’m not going to touch it again until the rest of the book is written.

Meanwhile, I’m going to contemplate about the actual benefits of suffering.

At least some amount of suffering. I finished reading War of Art by Steven Pressfield, which was amazing and related to what I’m talking about  so there’s a post in me on what I’ve learned from that book as well.

Until then…

Here is Chapter One of my YA Fantasy novel: BEASTS.

 

Warning: The following is over 3k words long. So take a bathroom break, get your mug of hot coffee and a cookie, sit back, relax and enjoy.

 

Continue reading “A Tiny Update and Not So Tiny Excerpt (BEASTS: Chapter One)”

Excerpt Day: BEASTS

 

These last few days I been advocating the need for action towards ones goals. One of the reasons I disappeared for three months is because I wanted to finish a chapter for my YA novel and post that as the next post. That never happened cause I never finished it. But I didn’t want to post something else because I was starting to feel like I was all bark, no bite.

I didn’t just want to talk about what I loved to do or wanted to do.

I actually wanted to do it.

I still haven’t finished that chapter, but it’s nearly done. I have a few things in the works.

A nonfiction book based on everything I talked about last week. My YA Shapeshifter novel. And Savior, my superhero noir story that may become a comic.

So today is excerpt day. Proof to myself that I am doing the work and following the dream, not just talking a great deal.

Funny enough, it’s been nearly a year since I’ve shared an excerpt of a WIP.

Perhaps July is just the month of sharing.

Enjoy.

 

 

~~~~

Chapter One

Stars twinkled above Nicolai when he opened his eyes and he was struck with a painful longing for the Antarctic sky. The image of a dark carpet of colorful light stretched across the heavens was clear as day in his mind. Then it was gone, back into the abyss with the rest of his lost memories.

So desperate to cling to his forgotten past, Nicolai remained on his back for several more minutes, trying to reimagine the picture. But it was useless. It may as well been a dream for all he knew.

With a heavy sigh, he sat up in the darkness. Sniffing the air, he figured he was sitting in a dank alleyway and that a cat passed by recently and marked his territory on the dumpster he’d been sleeping against.

“Yuck!”

Nicolai climbed to his feet, rubbing his face and grabbing his green knapsack.  Plunging his hand inside, he pulled out a water bottle and dumped the small amount of liquid inside on his face. That woke him up—though he hadn’t been tired to begin with. He couldn’t remember where he was or how he got there. He stood in the darkness for a moment, straining his memory. The last thing he could remember was reaching the Capitol on foot around midday, but that could have been days ago.

He glanced at the sky. It was late. Probably midnight judging by the moon and past curfew. At the far end of the alley, he could make out the faint glow of streetlights. On the other side of the dumpster was a solid brick wall. Great place for a nap…if you can call “randomly blacking out” a nap. He wanted to at least stay off the streets when night fell. Find an abandoned building or something. The last thing he needed was to run into the cops first day in the Capitol. The street would leave him expose. Catching sight of a fire escape just above him, he repacked his water bottle and reached for the ladder.

“Good evening.”

Nicolai froze. He sniffed again. Cat pee – a great cover for an actual cat. His eyes followed the voice and fell on a male figure crouched on the top of the brick wall. The stranger grinned widely, like a Cheshire cat, the moonlight reflecting off a row of sharpened white teeth and large amber eyes with almond shaped pupils.  Nicolai estimated him to be at least a few centuries old.

An Alpha.

“I take it you’re new around here, eh?” The Alpha cocked his head to the side, like a cat eyeing a mouse. “Shall I welcome you to the neighborhood?”

Nicolai didn’t move, but tensed his muscles, ready to bolt.  He inhaled deeply. Was this one alone? No. Alpha’s didn’t hunt alone. Where was his pack? And what species was he? Definitely not a house cat.

“What is it? Cat got your tongue?” The Alpha laughed, revealing even more of his sharp teeth. “Oh, not yet, I hope. That’s the most succulent part.”

Nicolai turned his gaze to the tops of the buildings. At least six stood on the edge of the roofs on either side. All male, blond and muscular. One silently jumped down to a fire escape a few floors above him to watch, hands gripping the railing as if to jump.

The Alpha’s amber eyes narrowed as his Cheshire grin changed – less amused, more sinister.

“You’re not welcome here.”

“I’m not hurting anyone.” Nicolai slid one foot back, trying to make the movement as unnoticeable as possible.

The Alpha wrinkled his nose, the grin vanished and his entire face plunged into shadow. “Your stench is hurting my nostrils.”

Sweat slid down the back of Nicolai’s neck. He moved his foot further, watching the approaching cat above him out of the corner of his eye. “Sorry. Can’t really do anything about that.”

“Oh but you can.” The Alpha’s teeth flashed again. “You can die.”

His amber eyes flicked up to the others. Nicolai grabbed the corner of the dumpster.

“Get him!”

The cat above him leaped onto the dumpster’s lid, his boots leaving a dent. Nicolai wrenched the dumpster forward the moment he landed and the entire thing came crashing down. The cat stumbled and smashed face first into the opposite building. The Alpha jumped from the wall, snarling, his clawed hands reaching for Nicolai’s neck.

He ducked to the floor and the Alpha flew over him. The other five cats were scrambling down the buildings. Nicolai quickly jumped onto the dumpster and over the brick wall.

The snarls behind him grew louder, feral and inhuman. Nicolai could guess what was happening, but he wasn’t about to wait and find out. There was no way he could outrun real cats unless he put some serious distance between them, so he ran.

Leap of Faith

 

When I was little, my mother used to tell me I could be anything I wanted to be when I grew up. I took it deeply to heart.

Years later, I remember having an argument with her and while I don’t remember the specifics, I do remember me bringing up how she used to say that to me and her reply was, “I wish I never said that.”

It didn’t matter. It was too late. The idea that I could do anything I wanted was engrained in me. But her words of regret for saying those words also stayed with me. I had a lot of problems. I wanted to spend my entire life telling stories. I specifically wanted to be a filmmaker, but didn’t have the support or confidence to go to film school.

I stubbornly refused to become anything else, but at the same time…I doubted.

As the years went by, I began to settle. I decided to be a novelist. I went to school for communications with the idea of getting a job in the movie industry as something else and work my way up. But unfortunately, I had no interest in classes that had nothing to do with storytelling. I could pass them with flying colors if I cared enough to do the work, but I didn’t. It caused a whole lot of anxiety.

I held back. I was too afraid to truly go for it. I kept putting off my creative writing because I was terrified of being proven wrong: that I can’t do it, that I can’t be whatever I wanted. By putting it off, I spared myself that horrifying realization. It was a way to protect my ego, my identity.

Fast forward to today, five years of college later. I dropped out and been working part time in fast food for nearly 2 years.

In my attempt to protect my secret belief, my secret wish that I could be whatever I wanted, I ended up living a lie. I haven’t actually done what I truly wanted to do in years. What was going? How did I fail to notice I was ruining my own life? Because I didn’t want to notice. It was too painful. My fear became a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Not anymore.

Yesterday, I handed in my resignation letter. July 3rd I will no longer be working in a job I hate. I’ll be truly on my own for financial support for the first time in my life.

I’m going to do what I always wanted to do.

I’m going to write a book.

In three weeks, on July 3rd, I’m going to put it up for sale on this website.

What will it be about?

It’ll be nonfiction. Every post over the course of these three weeks—including today’s—will be a piece of that answer.

This book, despite not being a work of fiction, is another dream of mine. Something I wanted to do, but thought I had to wait till I was old and gray and retired before having the credentials to write such a book. But I think I’ll do it now and see what happens

It’s time to finally face my fears and answer my doubts.

Can I really be anything I wanted?

Can I really be a writer?

 

 

 

 

 

(Yes, you can. So go for it).

MOCKINGJAY : I Was Wrong

 

I just finished reading Mockingjay, the last book of The Hunger Games Trilogy.

I am truly and utterly embarrassed by my last post regarding the first book.

Catching Fire, Book 2, fixed everything I felt wrong with the first.

And Mockingjay brought me to my knees.

I wonder if I should just delete the post, but maybe it’s good to have a reminder you don’t know everything.

How do I write this post… How do I put into words what I’m feeling regarding Mockingjay?

I literally JUST finished reading it. So this intense, incredible, overwhelming feeling may just be temporary. A part of me really hopes it isn’t. I hope that I don’t one day look back on this post and also feel humiliated by it.

Right now, I feel like there was me before I read Mockingjay, and then me after I read Mockingjay.

Like this novel has changed me forever.

That’s kind of embarrassing by itself. I mean I’m sure there are other books just as powerful, more so, classical works, literary works, grown up books that are more suited for the position of “the book that changed my life forever.”

But while I’m feeling what I’m feeling, I’m just gonna share it with anyone who comes across this blog, this post because I can. Because I need to get this off my chest.

For one, I was arrogant…and very stupid. Or maybe not?

As I was reading Catching Fire, I spoke with a friend who wouldn’t read Hunger Games because he feels it’s rubbish. That there are better books out there on the subject that these books address and all sorts  of other judgments. I kept thinking about it, and I actually thought he had a point.

I actually started to think that yeah, this wasn’t quality writing. It was candy. And in a sense it sort of really was. It was junk food. Genre fiction, sometimes…well okay, often is junk food. Not really healthy for you, won’t make you smarter or whatever, but simply entertains and helps you escape from reality.

The Hunger Games Trilogy had this feeling. The romance, the angst, the drama, etc. There are scenes, images that tug at a reader’s heart, in this case, especially at a female reader’s heart and I felt the writer used those types of scenes a lot beyond realism. I had come to the conclusion that The Hunger Games was like Twilight for the tomgirls.

Twilight for those who despised Twilight.

And maybe, I wonder, if that’s what the writer had intended. Lure me into thinking it going to be like every other book I ever read then do something I couldn’t ever have foreseen, especially since I was expecting something else entirely.

I couldn’t stop reading. I was in total addict mode. Totally relapsed. Why?

Well, the fact almost every chapter ended with a jaw dropping cliffhanger really helped. But there was something else.

I couldn’t predict what was going to happen next. Even when I try to guess, I was always wrong.

Every single time. Wrong, wrong, WRONG.

I tried to fit the story into a formula I was used to. Into a plot pattern I thought I knew.

But each book is so different from the last. Katniss is so different, changes so much in each consecutive book.

Then Mockingjay.

Fucking Mockingjay.

It started to get dark. Really dark. Soon, I was starting to get scared. A part of me was terrified what would happen next. I never had that feeling before when reading. I was crying more than once. Beloved characters died. Ambitious yet noble missions failed. My hands started to literally shake near the end. I could barely turn the pages.

Remember when I talked about pushing it? I complained that The Hunger Games didn’t push it enough? Well, this book pushes it. It pushes it right off the page. The place it takes the stories…I was utterly unprepared for and overwhelmed.

At the end, I was bawling. If anyone heard me, they would have thought I was insane.

Every cliché, unrealistic, plot development I thought would take place never did.

I find myself comparing it to other stories.

For me personally, it was an ending not many people like. It was an ending that probably reflects real life more accurately.

I don’t even have words to explain what this book did…in my eyes anyways.

In most fantasy/sci-fi YA, you have heroes and heroines. They have destinies. They have goals and missions. They have enemies. Evil personified. And usually, almost always, the heroes rise up and kill the wizard or dictator or whatever the main antagonist is no matter how old the protagonist is.

And then they live happily ever after.

Not in Mockingjay.

No. Katniss is helpless. Because seventeen year olds can only do so much. Even when they’re turned into a symbol for a revolution. Even when she’s the protagonist and the plot revolves around her. Even when she tries so hard, sacrifices so much…still, she was still at the mercy of people with more power, more control.  Because she was just one person. One young and unfortunate person.

And that’s reality.

….I think I understand why I feel so strongly about this book.

It has to do with the death of my mother.

This is one of the few times I read something, especially in YA fantasy/scifi fiction, that captured grieving of a loved one perfectly.

Captured death’s reality.

When mom died, I felt like my life was over. But time keeps moving forward. And there’s a part of me that feels like this shouldn’t be. I have to continue, because I don’t have a choice. The sun keeps setting and rising. The earth keeps turning. Human life continues around me.

Mockingkay’s ending chapters captured this beautifully. So real, so utterly beautifully, to the point I feel like…it helped me.

Sure, I was convinced I accepted the fact life continued with or without me and I moved on, but I haven’t really. Not really. I just shut out the world. Let the world keep going around me, while I lived in my own little reality I was in complete control over.

But the ending of Mockingjay…showed me a different way. A better way.

There are other things about it that blew me away. It showed the reality of violence, the truth that a world where life is sacrificed for the better good is not a world worth living in, no matter the reason.

Again this is hard to explain and I’m realizing this post is already so long, so unclear and so unfocused. I’m not making much sense.

It’s better if you just read the books yourselves and hopefully you’ll understand better what I’m talking about.

I’ll just end this as quickly as possible now.

Before I said my passion rekindled.

Now I say my passion has become a bonfire.

There are books I read, movies I watched, where afterwards, I knew for sure this is what I wanted to do. I wanted to create something that had this impact on another person. A story that moved a person to the extent I was moved.

But Mockingjay is a whole new level of inspiration.

I never knew you could…explore such themes in YA fantasy/sci-fi before. Not like this. And now I’m certain without a single doubt in my mind that this is what I want to do.

I want to do what this book has done.

My stories aren’t going to be cliché, shallow, superficial candy that just entertains and allows a person to escape.

Well, okay I do want to entertain and transport people to fictional worlds otherwise they’ll never stay (probably the biggest reason why mainstream and genre fiction is more popular than literary fiction). But I want to do that and change them. I want them to break down in tears and help them heal.

To give hope. But real hope, not illusion. Not a happily ever after fantasy. Hope that can be carried with them into the real world. Even if it’s YA fantasy/sci-fi. Even if it’s in the least likely of genres.

If I haven’t permanently changed as a person because of Mockingjay, I know for one I definitely changed as a writer.

And that’s pretty much what I wanted to say.

~~~

I also want to say or rather beg that everyone boycott watching The Hunger Games movie.

I want it to fail. To fail horribly.

So they don’t even think of making a Mockingjay movie.

Cause they’ll do it all wrong, just as they did The Hunger Games all wrong (look at the trailer after reading the book and you know they did it all wrong).

Some books shouldn’t be made into movies.

This is one of them.

But I’m weak and I’ll watch it anyways….cause maybe, just maybe they did get at least SOMETHING right.

 

Rekindling Dying Passions

 

Today, I got up early (or early-ish in my book) and worked on my WIP. I haven’t done this in months.

I used to do this all the time, used to do it every day for over a month during the Golden Age of Writing back in November 2008. That was a long while ago.

I’ve worked on becoming a novelist for a long time now. Seriously for nearly six years now. Well, on and off for nearly six years, if you call that being serious.  After so long, the dream got stale. I sort of forgot the reason why I wanted to write novels. I found myself putting it off more and more, and taking up other goals, other dreams. Like becoming an illustrator.

I stopped going to writing blogs, and started going to art websites. Soon, I stopped reading about fiction writing altogether and simply lost all passion for it. I was just going through the motions. I had a story in me and I was simply, slowly, getting it down. But that was it. My heart wasn’t in it like it used to be.

Due to my latest epiphany/breakthrough/breakdown/relapse/recovery I realized that perhaps art isn’t for me (I still wanna do it, but probably not full time).  My love for Story always comes first.

Then I realized the first chapter for my novel for the novel writing course I’m in is due March 2 and that I’m very much behind.

I brought out my lesson binder, caught up on the writing blogs I used to frequent (QueryShark, Terribleminds, etc), and started Fire in Fiction by Donald Mass I had bought a million years ago, but never touched.

And just like that. It returned.

I’m excited again.

Today, I finally got up earlier than absolutely necessary to work on my novel before taking Jesse to school. It was easier to do it this time. I wanted to get up early. I had worked on my assignment all last night and kept it fresh in my mind as I went to bed and on my mind when I woke up.

And man does it feel GOOD.

Have you ever lost the fire for something you loved to do and found it again?

How did you get it back?

Sneak Peak – Savior #2

I think a problem with blogging is not about having enough ideas, but rather not having time or taking time to execute those ideas well.

I have plenty ideas!

But today, time is short and I don’t want to rush anything.

So instead of a decent, informational post…I’m going to give you a teaser.

I’m working on a project. A mysterious project.

Well, more planning and less working. But as deadlines are met, and time is freed up, this will change soon enough.

It has a lot to do with a short story I wrote before: Savior. I’m working on its sequel and this is what I have so far.

Mind you this is unedited and can be more accurately described as freewriting than an actual sneak peak. And since I took down the short story that started this, Savior #1, this is probably going to be confusing to read unless you actually read and remember the first one before I removed it…

Still, it should have SOME entertainment value.

So enjoy.

~~~~

 

It was one of those days. A day that seemed to never end and happened to be one that you really wanted to end— right now.

~~~

Micah was the type you really didn’t want to bump into in an alley at night. He was a thug, pure and simple. Well, not exactly simple. Micah was like me. He had a sense of justice, a desire to smash in the face of evil. His most hated villain? The Mob. He did so well doing them away that most cops looked the other way. They’d never cross Micah. Not only because he was useful, but also because they knew if they tried arresting him, he wouldn’t hold back and will end up killing one of them.

Then they’d have no choice but to go after him and more cops would die. True, Micah would eventually go down with them and that was another reason they didn’t mess with him.

They liked him.

Which was funny when you think about it. Micah was the only super powered freak the cops actually approved of. Maybe because despite it all, Micah was still a low life, below them despite his powers.

A stray dog.

~~~

He looked like an overgrown kid, ripped jeans and backwards, dirty baseball cap on his messy head of black hair. He smirked boyishly as he pointed his bat at the kid pitcher.

Micah loved kids. Especially those who were in the same shitty circumstances as himself when he was a kid. That was why I came to see him. If anyone would be interesting in fighting this perp in this case, it was definitely Micah. But I just wanted info.

~~~

 

What do you think?

 

 

Friday Update

Let’s see if I can keep up a weekly thing where I post an update of everything I’m working on every Friday!

Things I’ve been doing this week so far…

 

  • I just finished submitted my plot summary for my Assignment #3 of LRWG. I won’t show it here since it’ll be big spoilers for the plot. I may give bits and pieces of it as I continue to work on BEASTS.

 

  • Crimson Dagger’s BLOODSPORTS Challenge#4 was a BIG FAIL. Didn’t even finish an initial sketch. Totally choked up. But this next challenge is to redesign a poster/dvd cover of a Hayao Miyazaki movie. And you guys all know how much I LOVE Hayao Miyazaki. I will do this even if the result is complete crap. I’ll do it for me. And even though I LOVE Princess Mononoke, I’ve decided on Nausiccaa. I’ll also use this as an excuse to talk more about Nausicaa and why love it so much here on an upcoming post this week. The Deadline is February 10, my birthday! So it will be my present to myself.

 

  • In the middle of Remilon training. Deadline is February 3. I hope to finish its requirement way before then, so this’ll probably my focus for this week. Upon official completion and approval of my first article assignment I get $120, so that’s encouraging.

 

That’s pretty much it for now.  I’d like to show more artwork on my blog and in other places and take more photos. I’d alot like to talk about my other projects and work more on them.  But I also got to clean my house, it’s a true disaster.

 

Wish me luck, guys.

 

What have you guys been up to this last week?

Plotting for Dummies

Right now, I’m working with plot in my Novel Course with Long Ridge Writers Group and working the initial plotting of my YA shapeshifter novel BEASTS (title subject to change) about a raptor shapeshifter looking for a home.

LRWG’s writing courses are designed for those who haven’t written a single story in their lives. So it’s all very basic. Since I’ve read a whole lot about how to write a novel and about story structure before and worked on PROPHECY for NaNo 2008-2010, I already have an idea of how a plot is structured.

So this lesson feels very basic to me. It’s a good thing though. These are the fundamentals that’ll support my entire writing career and are necessary to master if you want to be successful.

Without further ado, I shall give you my understanding of what a basic plot requires (basically what I learned so far from the course):

Characters

Duh.  But here’s the thing. Characters aren’t just people, they’re people with problems. Those problems are internal and external. Usually, especially genre fiction, external conflicts/problems are what push the character into action and start the whole thing going. It’s the Inciding Incident, as Les Edgerton in HOOKED would call it, and what complicates things and keeps the story interesting.  The internal conflicts are what make the story truly interesting and determine the characters actions and reactions to the external conflict.

My main character of BEASTS, Nicolai’s external conflicts include not having a home or a clan to belong, and a crazy twin brother trying to kill him. His primary motivation is survival and safety. Things are further complicated by the fact he’s one of the last of his species and shapeshifters in my world only stick to their own kind and are distrustful of all other shifters (especially strange ones like Nico), thus making Nicolai’s goal of resolving this problem, of being accepted into a clan, very difficult.

His internal conflicts are his insecurity and cowardice. Instead of facing his brother, he runs away from him and all his problems. His answer is to find someone to hide behind and he’ll discover this isn’t the best way to get what he wants. So as you read about how Nicolai needs to find a place to belong, his actions and dialogue (his methods of acquiring this goal) are rooted from his internal conflicts: his insecurity and tendency to flee rather than fight, which spice things up.

Climax

For me, the Climax comes along very naturally.  To explain it in my own words, it’s sort of a buildup of conflicts, of problems, piling on top of each other and reaching a peak before it all topples over in an avalanche.

It’s problem after problem, each getting worse than the last, and even though there are rests between problems where the character does something to ease the tension just a bit, something else happens  even worse until it reaches the climactic moment.

Every plot needs a climax.

LRWG teaches that the climax scene needs to be a Do or Die moment. All or Nothing.

Nicolai’s climax is when he can no longer run away anymore. He needs to face his problems or lose everything, including his life. And if he loses everything, the story comes to an abrupt end. He can’t just run away and try something else. It’s like literally putting your character on the edge of the cliff and poking him in the back with a spear. Turn back and get skewered, but take a wrong step, plunge and die.

So what happens next, what he chooses to do next in this impossible situation, is the climatic and most important scene of the entire novel.

Ending

The beginning was the introduction of the character and their conflicts or problems. The middle is the pile up of those problems till it reaches a Do or Die moment.

Then comes the ending.

I’ve heard this many times from various sources, not just LRWG, that it’s best to leave the story as soon as you’re able to. The climax is over, so basically the most interesting thing in the book is done. There is no longer any reason for the reader to keep reading so it’s best to wrap things up and not dawdle with a hundred-page epilogue.

Tie up all loose ends for THIS story. But I don’t believe it means you can’t leave some tiny threads for a possible sequel.

Unlike PROPHECY, it was much easier to plot BEASTS as a standalone story, even though I always intended it to be a series. Funny enough, PROPHECY had started out as a standalone story that ended up becoming a trilogy (and now possibly a series of trilogies).

BEASTS (unlike my other novels, so I feel like this could be the ONE) has a very clear question asked in the beginning of the story and at the end, it’s very clearly answered.

BUT it’s also easy to leave things unanswered that don’t necessarily need to be answered now. The answers that, in ordered to be explained fully, would need a story all themselves. In other words, answers that need a sequel.

I have a few of these lingering questions in BEASTS so if all goes well, that’ll entice publishers and readers to pick up a second book.

 

~~~~

 

A plot needs time.

The plot for BEASTS fell into place all by itself, but it wasn’t overnight. I say I was noodling with this idea since 2009 or perhaps earlier. From then till now, it’s been slow cooking in the back of my mind.

Needless to say, I have a whole lot of ideas to work with. Heck, now and then I work on scenes for the third or possibly fourth book (not exactly sure where this story lies in the chronological scheme of things). I also have origin stories, backstories that really serve no purpose for the story other than for my own personal amusement.

I feel a story will tell you when it’s ready to be written.  It goes from images and ideas, to characters, settings, and names, to scenes with action and dialogue. It’s usually around then that the call to begin writing (an outline, character sketches or the first draft) comes or maybe sooner, depending on the writer.

Don’t rush it. It’ll suck otherwise. But don’t let it burn either.

I know of stories, awesome stories or ideas for stories I still want to work on someday that I’ve lost because I never took the next step and wrote some of it down. It boiled over and became lost in my jumble of memories.

And there you have it more or less. Everything you need to know about plotting. The basic of the basic. And sometimes, basic is good.

If you’re also a writer, what have you learned about plotting thus far in your career or if you’re taking a writing course, what are you learning now?

If you’re not a writer, when it comes to stories you read, what types of stories do you enjoy? Full of cliffhangers? Fast paced or slow paced?

 

(LOOKING BACK:

The goals I had set in November are coming along nicely. I’m on track with BEASTS and the novel course; currently working through the orientation process with Remilon a writing job; and I’ve gotten more serious with practicing art thanks to the Crimson Daggers website.  So far so good).

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