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Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by xerolee, Jan 12, 2012.

  1. xerolee

    xerolee Scribe

    I was woundering if any of you just write and come up with ideas along the way or plan to the finest detail. I have heard some authors write there entire story, very basic on one page. So you know the beginning, middle and end. Any other tips?
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2012
  2. Johnny Cosmo

    Johnny Cosmo Inkling

    I'm a fan of outlining, but I'm not experienced enough to advice others. There is still the option for spontaneity with outlining, because nothing has to be set in stone.
  3. sashamerideth

    sashamerideth Maester

    I write my first draft with minimal planning. I never go back, never edit, only take notes as I go along. I will decide beforehand general characters and general settings then I just write.

    After the first draft is done or so bad it is unrecoverable, I write again from the beginning using my notes and what I learned from the first draft. This, I will write say a chapter, then when I come to it next read only what I wrote in the last sitting, and continue the story. I rarely paste from the first draft, unless it is something that I didn't write as well in the rewrite. Hasn't happened yet but I am allowing for it.

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  4. Steerpike

    Steerpike Felis amatus Moderator

    I plan the longer works I am working on. For short stories, I tend to just sit down and write. I've even had a few where I didn't feel they needed revision after the initial draft, though that's rather rare for me.
  5. Graham Irwin

    Graham Irwin Sage

    How I write:

    1st. Daydream stage (aided by mead or pipeweed) (Hemingway said write drunk, edit sober)
    During this stage I'll watch movies and documentaries about my subject. I'll read extensively too, fiction and non-fiction. Non-fiction for the scientific or historical research I need for my story. Also, for me, it's always a good idea to have one of the "great" writers words running around my head, so I'll read something I treasure.
    2nd. Scribble down vague ideas on pizza box
    3rd. Plunge into writing 10 pages a day
    4th. Everyday after that, I edit 10 pages from day before and write 10 new ones
    5th. Put in in a box for a month (Tennessee Williams recommended 3 months)
    6th. Read through the whole thing
    7th. Daydream
    8th. Heavy edit and re-write, using the original draft as a template
    9th. Give to friend to edit, have discussion about themes and ideas that I may not have paid enough attention to
    10th. Another re-write
    11th. Put it up on Kindle and watch as it sells an amazing 5 copies

    More or less.
  6. SeverinR

    SeverinR Vala

    I tried several stories without any planning, they tended to stagnate without a direction, or I would write myself into a corner.

    I need at least a minimal outline, beginning, several high points, and a place for an end.
    I like being able to have a suprise encounter, so I don't plan meticulously.

    My writing is like planning a vacation, you know the start, a few sights on the way, and where you want to end up. You can always stop and see the "worlds largest wiget museum" along the way.
  7. Devor

    Devor Fiery Keeper of the Hat Moderator

    We all have different strengths and weaknesses in the preplanning stage. If you're not sure whether outlining is helpful or not to you, I suggest you try writing out an outline and then throw it out. I mean that literally. See if you have any idea where you want to go and the steps you want to take to get there, and just writing it once should give you enough guidance without committing you to a rough and possibly terrible preplanning process.

    I mean, of course "preplanning" can happen even as you write, or even after you write. Maybe you'll decide later that you want to do an outline, or that you've changed something and want to do the same thing again. You've got to figure out what works well for you.
  8. Androxine Vortex

    Androxine Vortex Archmage

    This is how I write. Usually a single idea dawns on me that I fall in love with. I say to myself, "Yeah I could go somewhere with this!" Then I'll add onto it and build on it (mentally still) until I have a vague idea of what my story *might be like. This is pretty much the story in it's most basic form. So if I was to do this to LOTR, it would be, "There is a ring of dark power that an evil being needs to return to power. It has to be cast back into the fires of where it was forged and a band of companions must do this."

    Next I continue to think of ways to expand my story but usually here I begin to write things down and try and organize my thoughts. A LOT of editing, crossing out, and inspiration goes into this phase. As I continue to add more details, I begin to go more in depth to the characters and basically, what goes on in the plot. This is by far the longest "phase" for me because I must have a decent outlined and detailed plot with my characters defined and my world constructed.

    After that, I begin to actually write. I always go back and edit but this is where I make sure I fill in all the empty cracks of my plot.
  9. hppavmx704

    hppavmx704 Dreamer

    Normally I'll have a vague idea of what I'm going to write about. I'll jot some ideas down for a couple of days. Commit them to memory and then I'll start writing. I know where I want my story to go it is just getting there that is blurry maze. Once I start writing that is when the haze starts to lift and I know how to get there. If I get some more ideas on parts that I already wrote or parts that are way in the future I'll either write them down or commit them to memory.

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