Friday, January 15, 2010
Susan May's Writing World
I’m still in search of my real writing process. I don’t know but I may always be in search of it on some level. My newest step is learning to embrace and appreciate a synopsis. Which I have done, and wish I’d done sooner. I begin a book by making notes about my characters, setting and story line. I use something similar to Deb Dixon’s GMC frame to start. It usually takes a week or so of making notes, thinking and making more notes before I can put something serious on the page. I would like to say I write on a new story every day but I’m more of a spurt person. Pages here and pages there.
J PERRY'S WRITING PROCESS:
I don't do anything without having ingested a giant cup o' Joe. That done, I reread ONLY the new writing I wrote the day before to oil my gears. I polish that up then forge on ahead. Wash, rinse, repeat the next day. After the whole draft is complete, I go through and polish 2-3 more times (I'm not a clean writer) and then I'm finished.
I write from a detailed synopsis I hash out with my critique partner before ever beginning the book. I don't do detailed charts--I'm too impatient to read through them--more of a bullet-point system of necessary plot details. Sometimes I stray from the details, but I'm usually pretty loyal to the plan. When I run into snags, again, my CP is my writing oxygen. She gives me a billion and one options, without ever getting getting too attached to the suggestions she's given me, and lets me pick and choose at will.
I Write in the Dark : Nicki Salcedo
Sometimes I turn off my monitor and write in the dark. When doing a deep revision, I don’t edit. I re-write every word of a chapter so I force myself to lose the extraneous words. It is difficult for me to write about things that I can see, but once I have an image in my memory I can create in on the page. I like to wake up at 3 a.m. and write. Well, I don’t really like this, but when I am awake at 3 a.m. I take advantage of the quiet and write. In this season of my life, I write long hand. I only recently went to this process. I think it reminds me of keeping a diary or journal growing up. I don’t write as fluidly when I type. I write better with pen on paper.
My Writing Process: CiCi Barnes
I started out with pencil and paper, writing anywhere and everywhere, especially when traveling with hubby. I have now graduated to the computer at home and a laptop or AlphaSmart Neo on the road. Pencil and paper creep back on the scene sometimes, but not often.
I have never been one to sort everything out before I start writing the story. I get a nugget of an idea and then start typing. My characters develop and lead me down the road they want me to follow. At some point, around the middle, I start to list bullet points of how I want to proceed to the end. Sometimes my characters agree; sometimes they don’t. I follow their whims, for they are usually right.
My writing day begins by 9:00 am and goes to at least 5:00 pm, if not 6:00 pm (depending on hubby’s empty tummy). I take a break around 12:30 for lunch. I also try to get up every couple of hours for about 15 minutes to do a quick household chore or just stop and breathe in some fresh air. I usually start out reading what I wrote the day before to refresh my memory and then move onto the next scene.
I used to edit as I went, but realized the process bogged down my writing. I fight the urge and leave the revising and editing until after I’ve written The End.
I’m blessed to be able to devote my days to writing without having to deal with a day job or children begging for my time and attention. My hat’s off to those who deal with life’s multiple juggles and writing too.
My writing process has evolved over the years. Some things I did at the beginning, still work, others have fallen by the wayside as I’ve learned, grown and attended more conferences to expand my knowledge. My advice: don’t be a slave to one way of working. Try out different methods and choose the one that fits your personality and lifestyle. Don’t scoff at trying a new way of doing things until you’ve tried it and it doesn’t work.
As in your writing, your methods of turning out the best book need to explore all possibilities.