While I was sort of snoozing in my special spot under the desk, I heard my human Mom, Author Kelly Abell, droning on about organizing her writing. She was preparing for an upcoming workshop she was about to teach, and it must have been stressing her out. As you can see, nothing much stresses me out. I’m pretty chill, except at the vet. Anyway, I digress. Here’s a snapshot of what she was mumbling about…
5 Ways to Organize Your Novel
- Write the back blurb first – She says this gives you a high level road map of where you’re going.
- Do Character Sketches on all your characters – This is critical, Kelly says. If you don’t know your characters and what their motivations and goals are, how can you write the story? Click Here for a sample character sketch.
- Write a two or three paragraph per chapter outline. I don’t know what this means exactly, but it sounds pretty smart. She said something about people being pantsers vs. outliners. Sounds like pantsers might be more fun to hang out with, but when it comes to writing, its not Mom’s style. She’s pretty intense when it comes to her writing. She says having a road map makes your writing more polished and reduces the chances of writing yourself into a corner.
- Keep things at hand and organized – She kept getting all excited about a tool called OneNote. Do you all know what that is? She says it’s like some online notebook with tabs and everything. It works great for keeping things separate and organized. She has tabs for Characters, Plot Lines, Research – broken down into more tabs, Story Outlines, and a whole bunch of other stuff. I’m sure she’d explain it to you if you ask.
- Write your story. She called this the Word Vomit version. Yuck. I’m a dog and even that sounded gross to me, but that’s what she does. Writes the whole book before she even begins to edit. Get it down on paper or the computer.
Well she’s stopped talking to herself now, so I’m going back to my nap. If you have any questions, just comment below. I’m sure she’ll get back to you pronto. Happy Trails! J
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