How Do I Plan a Book? – August Writing Tips #7

Idea polished. Research done. You’ve read all you can read. Time to plan. Some stages I go through in planning.

Initial Notes

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I’ve begun these in the ideas and research stage. I’ll refer to them and add to them as I write. I note down everything, chapter ideas, names, title, metaphors, devices, character profiles, themes.

Rough Drafts

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As ideas come to me, I don’t want to start typing, but I don’t want to miss the sentences forming in my noggin. So often my writing starts in notebooks amongst my scribbled notes. Often this is just a paragraph or sentence. Sometimes a whole chapter comes out this way

Chapter Breakdown

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I usually plan my plot by giving some narrative structure to my ideas in a chapter breakdown. This is changeable – very changeable! I convert this to a working document (that I colour code – the geek in me coming out!). This document then forms the bulk of my notes, what made the cut, and is the main thing I refer to throughout the writing of the novel, particularly in the latter stages.

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All my pictures are from different novels, so don’t try to draw together any plot from the four!

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