seraphcelene: (it mocks me)
[personal profile] seraphcelene
Outlining has never been so much fun. Working on a long-form novel and ... long form isn't my strong point. Hell, sometimes short form isn't my strong point. /self-deprecation

I've also got a wicked Vitamin D defiencey which is apparently what has been leaving me on my ass the last few months. I'm on a 50K pill once a week for the next 12 weeks. I've taken three so far and the difference in my energy levels is pretty noticeable. Who knew ...

And that gets me back to the outlining. The Briar short that was included in All This and Love under the title "this, too, like water and memory" was intended as an exploration of this character who had been meandering through my brain for the last some odd years. It mostly didn't work, but ... well, it's out there now.

Anyway, a friend's boyfriend recommended Blake Snyder's book on screenwriting, Save the Cat. Although the book can tend towards condescension and some of the principles don't translate well to how I understand novel writing, there are a few things that have been incredibly helpful in structuring the way that I think of the story so that I can move past a short-from execution and into something longer. The 15 beats is the most crucial part of the formulation, and although I doubt that all of what I'm outlining will make it into the novel, again ... structurally it has proven very helpful.

My problem tends to be I know the beginning and I know the end, but all that stuff in the middle gets muddled and I have trouble traveling the distance from A to Z. Shorter pieces mean that I'm only writing a narrow, tightly controlled portion of the story. The beats are helping me to think of the elements that I need. The Stuff that has to Happen kind of idea. Now, Snyder is a believer in formula even though you're changing the details. I'm more of a learn the rules so that you can break them properly kind of girl. As an exercise, Save the Cat works for me at this point.

There's also the Fractal/Snowflake method that [personal profile] yhlee introduced in a post, and it's also been very helpful.

Finally, I've been reading John Dufresne's The Lie That Tells A Truth. Maybe I just needed to get to this point, but for some reason all of these sources are clicking and synthesizing. The result is that I am feeling pretty excited about the project.

It's really nice to feel excited about writing again. And to feel like I can actually do it. Of course, the proof will be in the pudding. See me diving in!

Anyone else working on original things? How's it going? What's your inspiration?

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seraphcelene

August 2016

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