TGIF and all that, my fellow book lovers. We have cheekily dubbed this ‘Freaky Friday,’ as we are posting ‘Writing Wednesday‘ today and ‘FaceTime Friday‘ tomorrow, which is Saturday. The reason behind all the weekday shuffle? Heather is flying into Alabama today to reunite our WonderTwin powers of book nerdery for a long weekend of cousin/BFF fun!
My topic this week is a tough one for me: story mapping and outlining. I’m certain that one of the many reasons The Lord saw fit to bless me with four children was to help me overcome my two major weaknesses: procrastination and disorganization. Don’t get me wrong, I seem to rally under pressure and have pulled magic out of my rear end, er, hat at the last minute on several occasions, at the cost of what I am sure have been YEARS shaved off my life. I also realize that as a creative personality, as is the case with most of us, there is method in our madness, or mess as it were, but that doesn’t mean that choosing the path cluttered with beautifully random ideas is the easiest one.
I know for myself, that in writing my current novel, it has poured out of me in anything but chronological order. However, when the notion for this story was birthed in my mind, I did have a rudimentary idea of how the sequence of events would play out. I understand that there is and has been extreme literary genius in this world, in which writers scribbled out perfection onto the written page in stream of consciousness fashion. And while my hat is off to the Austens and Hemingways of the fictional universe, I chose to take the road more traveled in this instance. By having my outline, I can better organize and govern the pieces of my story however they unfold, with an earlier view of whether an idea connects and flows as it should, BEFORE I’ve invested a pound of flesh into it, and am less likely to want to let it go. Besides, the best novels are comprised of plots and subplots that are beautifully woven throughout the story, subtlety and seamlessly. The best way to disguise stitching is to start with a pattern.
I hope that some of my experiences as I navigate this wonderful journey are helpful to you. Please join us next week, when Writing Wednesday returns to its regularly scheduled time.