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.
Palace 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.
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.
Palace of the Three Crosses: Book Two available at MuseItUp Publishing
and Amazon Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FAPW43G