Author Blog Post: Day 10

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Describe your process for outlining your book. What do you do to stay organized? Do you use a software like Scrivener? Index cards? Sticky notes? Giant posterboards taped to the wall?

I know yesterday I said I wasn’t going to use the prompts this week, but this one seemed appropriate for some of what I am going through with my current wip.

palaceofthethreecrosses200x300Palace of the Three Crosses: Book Two was a book I attempted to outline. I like to tell this story whenever I get in a discussion about outlining-vs- not outlining. with PTC I had already written the first book in the series and I thought the third book was written, so easy peasy. I know where the story was and where I thought the story was going, so I write an outline. A lot of people told me you have to write an outline, its the only way to write a story.

I’m one week into November NANO. The story is not going anywhere. The characters refuse to tell their story. That writer’s block that I talked about in an earlier post reared it’s ugly head. I couldn’t write.

I threw out the outline and let Joachim and Brandan take control of the story. And boy did they take off. The story that they told ended up even better than the one I outlined. Of course changes had to be made in what I thought was the third book. And that little book that I thought was the third book, ended up as an excerpt in the third book, because I also realized that the story I was trying to tell was about Brandan and Joachim and not Airyn, Joachim’s son.

So anyway back to my original point and my dilemma with my current wip. When I have things laid out in a neat little package I feel limited, confined, constricted. That is the case with one of my current wip’s. I have the idea for a plot and characters that I have to include and a predetermined theme and I am feeling constricted. The story is still reeling itself out like a film, but the road is rougher, filled with more potholes that I need to navigate. I will get through it, because I must, but for me it is not the best way for me to work.

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As for my organization: Each of my wip’s has a notebook with all research material and critiques if it has reached that phase as well as anything else that pertains to the project. For my personal wip’s I have timelines on a whiteboard so I can keep the story straight and I know what should happen when and that I don’t repeat an event or have it show up in the wrong place. I’ve developed family trees so I can see who is related to who and maps so I can see where things are happening. I currently do all my writing in Word. I have heard so much about Scrivener that I am going to check it out.

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Palace of the Three Crosses: Book Two available at MuseItUp Publishing

and Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAPW43G

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News on Palace of Twelve Pillars

So it finally happened. On August 11, 2012 I received a contract for 12 Pillars. After a couple of days to let the news sink in and come to believe the offer was real I signed the contract and emailed it back to the publisher. Palace of Twelve Pillars is now under contract with MuseItUp Publishing, expected release date April 2013.

They are also interested in Palace of Three Crosses and Sanctuary of Nine Dragons, so now I am in a scramble to finish them up and submit them as well as waiting for any changes the publisher has for 12 Pillars.

I will keep you updated on the process, but its looking to be an exciting few months.

Updates

Just a quick note to let you all know where things are.

You know I have been querying Palace of Twelve Pillars since the end of August.  Here are the numbers on the 14 queries that have been emailed:

Five rejections

Five still waiting for responses

One accepted and I rejected

And two have asked for and recieved full ms

With a third one asking for a ms and synopsis as well as a synopsis of Palace of Three Crosses and Sanctuary of Nine Dragons. This one just happened today and I never expected the publisher to be interested in all three novels, since I only went in there pitching one novel. But she asked if it was a stand alone, I told her yes, although there were to other books that could make it into a series. When she asked the progress of the other two, I about fell off my chair. So long story short, I now have someone looking at the whole series and have to get my butt in gear with a synopsis and getting the third one finished. Things are hopping now.

I’ll keep you posted.

Christina Weigand