Saturday, June 6, 2009

Chapter Outlining

My goal is to write a chapter each week. Last week I wrote two chapters but those were new and had fewer scenes than normal. Since I had not outlined them I struggled to get the scenes written. I had to plan the scenes out as I wrote. No way I could survive as an organic writer.

So, yesterday I outlined the scenes I planned for my next chapter. Previously I had at most a sentence or two describing the scenes. Now I have full paragraphs for all but one of the scenes. In addition, I developed another important scene to add to the chapter.

Friday is the one day of the week I can work as late as I want since I don't have to get up early the next day. I will now use Fridays to plan out the scenes for the upcoming chapter. I hope that this will speed up the actual writing since much of the information will be planned out ahead of time. I think this will also help me speed up my initial outlining phase since I would not need to write out as much detail for early drafts of the outline.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Freehand Writing

I tried something new this last weekend: freehand writing. Normally I compose directly into the computer and find myself working as fast as possible to get to the end of a scene or chapter. I had heard that some writers write freehand because they can take more time to think about what they write. Since I wanted to find ways that would help me better experience the characters and their story I thought I would try this out.

It did not work well for very long. I found myself rewriting the first paragraph three times. In addition, I felt trapped and my creativity seemed stifled. I stopped after getting a few paragraphs into the scene. I even planned the scene out with what aspects of plot, character, and description I wanted to include. Even with all of that planning I still felt like I had hit a brick wall creatively.

Later I typed what I had into the computer and started composing the scene as I normally do. An hour later I had the scene completed. Although I will need to go back later and edit the scene I feel that I was able to make progress whereas the freehand method seemed to get me nowhere.

On a later scene I may take the planning I did with the freehand method and combine it with the organic composing I do on the computer. That may be a good combination for me. When I have a firm idea of what a scene contains I can compose fairly quickly.