I have read many articles and books about writing strategies over the years to help me focus on what it is I need to work on, give me inspiration and to try to expand my horizons. Many of them talk about organizing your work, especially if you are writing a series. I couldn’t agree with them more, but I seem to lack the enthusiasm to actually do what they tell me to do.
My prime example, the Abandoned on Earth series I’ve starting writing on my blog. Yeah, if you haven’t noticed I’ve pretty much been writing by ear on that one. The same went for my Alia Grey short, except with that story i had written and saved it in another program on my computer along with a number of other research and character sheets relating to the main character. I’ve even used her as my lead for my NaNo 2013 novel this past November.
Abandoned on Earth started out as an experiment on how I could introduce my main character, her talents, skills and shortfalls in one chapter. Of course, this is a story I’ve had on the brain for a while and knew that I would need to write it out eventually, where else then a blog to test the waters, to see where this story would take me? I thought it was a pretty good idea, except now after my 8th post I realize this is going to be a novel length story instead of the short one I’ve written for Alia Grey. So… I think i need to spend a bit more time and actually do some backgrounds, list some common devices, objects and reverence points, so that I don’t screw things up even further as I try to move this story further.
Which brings me to the next question, how?
I will admit that I consider myself a semi-organizser. I like organization, I understand it’s purpose but every once in a while I will lapse and my apartment would be covered with multiple side projects, papers, bills and who knows what else. Of course, I know where everything is… most of the time, but eventually it get’s too cluttered and I clean, file and toss what needs to be tossed. It’s like my brain. Sometimes what I’m writing on is right there, the outline is clear, the destination and characters are clear and I am able to put my thoughts down pretty well. Other times, I’m completely scattered, I’m unable to focus, and i jump from one project to the next, to whatever drives my inspiration at the moment. So, i’m organized on some days but not everyday.
Finally tonight i managed to pull all of my posts on Abandoned on Earth, and save them into a Scrivener file. (I love Scrivener!) That is the first step! One that I should have done at the beginning, but didn’t. Hopefully the rest of the weekend I can add in my character backgrounds, and even work on my overall plot… which is there, somewhere, hidden. Really my next step is to figure out an outline on where I want to lead Avis on her journey and what i want to have happen to her. Surprisingly I already have the ending in mind, and I know that i really need to plan the steps in between.
From there, well, we’ll see.