Turning that great idea into a story

That really is the first part isn’t it. You have this great idea and it seems cool and interesting. If you read something like this on the back of a book you would buy it, so then you start writing the back blurb, think about character development, what is the actual conflict, plot points and possible scene breakdowns. Your relaxing shower is now not so relaxing, Oh that’s right this shit is work. What was a fun thought in your head, while enjoying your five minutes of peace known commonly as a morning shower, starts looking like months or years of work.

This is the mental Ferris wheel my mind keeps doing. I started searching around the internet for information on how my favorite authors managed to write while still having a day job that wasn’t writing.  What I found was that Charles Stross managed to write one novel in 3 years while working full time although Seanan McGuire manages 3 novels a year, neither of them have 2 kids. So maybe I need to get used to the idea that this really is just a hobby for me as I have a full life.

That said I still want to write and am drawn to working on the process of novel writing. So then I guess that I just have to be patient with myself and plod along. The path may be slow and steep but that will no doubt make that first time I am published all the sweeter.

The ideas keep coming and I am taking the time to write them down. I found a new book about writing – Million Dollar Outlines – David Farland. This had quite a few ‘a ha’ moments for me. I am collecting a good number of references that help in crafting an outline. Each day is about taking one more step in turning those ideas into finished manuscripts..

Happy Writing 🙂




New Year, New Plans

Big Sigh. Yep NaNoWriMo was a big FAIL. I was sick the week before and after a great start on day one I just couldn’t figure out where I was going. So after spending a week not writing I decided to try to figure out what the problem was and start dealing with that. The short answer, after some soul searching and research, is that I needed a very detailed plan to cope with such a big daily word output.

This then led to the realization that I didn’t know how to do that, at least not in a way that I was happy with, so I started researching. Firstly I came across Rock Your Plot and purchased the ebook and audio book. There is also a great website with further resources. Then I added to what I learned there with a great post on Advance Fiction Writing. Between these two sites I had created a spreadsheet to start filling out scene by scene.

The next road block I faced was when looking at all the scenes/sequences that I needed to sketch out. I turned to Jim Butcher’s series of posts on Live Journal (he writes the series The Dresden Files) for some advice. Might as well go to a professional whose work I love. His posts made a lot of sense but I still needed something more.

Digging deeper I started to read Story Structure Architect. This had 55 dramatic situations to delve into and now I was starting to get my head around how to weave my story and manage subplots.

There is still much reading and work to do but now I have the beginnings of a structure to weave a story around.

Happy Writing 🙂




Well two weeks after having sleeve surgery I am further behind in my lead up to NaNoWriMo. I did manage to crank out a couple of plans but haven’t gotten my research done and haven’t really settled on a detailed enough outline that will satisfy my tight schedule.

Still it doesn’t start until the end of the week. So I still have a few days to try to get things together. We will see where I am come Nov 1st. I am not hopeful at this point but I haven’t given up yet either. Only time will tell.

Good night and good luck my fellow writers xx

Outlining for NaNoWriMO

So last night I started to outline my manuscript for NaNoWriMo. I decided to start this process using Google Sites. I have been using Google Sites for a while to write. It means that I have a collection of ideas and reference material that sticks around between my sporadic attempts and avoids the usual data loss that happens when I change my hardware or it dies.

I am still using the Manuscript app on my iPad but I always fear losing data on standalone devices, even though I can backup to Dropbox from within the application, I still have to remember to do that. On Google Sites its just always there.

The first outline question I have asked myself is, how detailed does this outline need to be? At this point I am looking at having a daily plan. I figure that it is better to have a detailed plan and not need it rather than write myself into a corner that I cant think myself out of in the time I have to produce 50, 000 words. This may prevent my turning out a pile of crap that is too much effort to edit into anything after November.

I have started to create a page on the site for each day and am planning to have the direction, plot point etc at the beginning of each page. I figure I can change it on the day if I come up with something better but I will at least have a starting point. I already have the main idea and major plot points written out. I am enjoying looking at the story as a whole and trying to find the most interesting ways to develop certain aspects of it or how to bring out aspects of my characters.

Joy. It is creative joy.

Good luck my fellow writers 🙂


I have signed up for NaNoWriMo this year. Deep breath. I don’t know at this point if this is even realistic. I would love to be able to get a large enough piece of work done so that I can spend time shaping it.

I seem to spend time starting but I don’t even get to a middle or end. Maybe I am not creating enough of an outline to work with. Or maybe this is like uni and without a deadline I dont know how to put pressure on myself to get this first piece done.

Only one way to really find out. Do it.

Good Luck fellow writers 🙂