This sums up my writing right now. Basically, I'm not doing it like I should.
Why is it that when you sit down to write everything is more interesting then actually writing? I seriously checked every blog I knew, checked my email multiple times, read through the goodreads feed, and scrolled through pinterest before I finally started writing this.
And I'm supposed to be doing a post about writing. My advice? DON'T GET DISTRACTED!
Anyway, moving on ... :P
It's been forever since I did a post about it, and I thought it would be fun if I did a post about my writing process. Sound fun? I hope so! :)
The very first thing I do after get an idea (and decide I want to put time and energy into it) is research. This normally involves making a list of what sort of things I need to research. For example I'll use one of my latest stories that is set in WWII in America, France and England during the Battle of Britain. My research list looked something like this.
--America before WWII
The armed services before the war
American opinion of the war
Men who left america to fight in Britain
--The Battle of Britain
'The Few". American men who risked all to fight in the battle of Britain.
Aircraft in the Battle of Britain
Origins of the RAF (royal air force)
Pilots in the RAF
--The German invasion of France
The fall of the Maginot line
The German invasion
German government within the occupied cities
German espionage in Britain after France was captured
After I identified all the areas I would need to study, I made, you guessed it, a trip to the library. Or, in my case, libraries. I wrote this story during NaNo, so I was trying to get most of my planning done before it started. The stacks of library books I had on my shelf at any given time in October was ridiculous. However I was able to get most of it done my the 1st of November! And of course, there were still things I had forgotten to look up and research before hand that I needed once I had started. So I made a list, and when we went to the annual WWII reenactment, I bombarded one of the German infantry soldiers with questions. (Thankfully he was nice and understanding and he put up with talking to me for nearly an hour.)
Oh, and did you know that those who went overseas to fight with Great Britain could have their American citizenship revoked?
Yes, I know that was really random.
As I was researching, I wrote down the information I through I would need, or just little tidbits I thought would be interesting, onto 3 x 5 note-cards. These I organized according to date (which event happened first). This made it easy for when I was writing. If I needed any information while I was writing, I could simply go to my note-cards, find the approximate date I was looking for, and than get what I needed.
|Researching before and organizing also keep this from happening ...|
And then there's the outlining. I don't formally outline. I have the events I want in order, and I simply write my characters into the events. Now, this isn't saying I don't do any outlining! I do outline my characters, their personal strengths and weaknesses, as well as their personalities before I write. And I'm the kind of person who likes to have the overall plot written out, so I do that as well!
3. Get ready
Yes, this, in my opinion, needs it's own category! Because when I write, I have to get ready. I have to purpose to set time aside, and than I need to make sure I spend that time on writing and writing only. Which means I have to make myself close every other tab except my email and just write. Although I do normally have youtube up as well. Because I need music when I write!
This is the best part. (of course!) I finally get to just sit and write. I like to start at the beginning and work my way towards the end. However, a dear friend taught me that it's okay to write a random scene or idea you, especially if your stuck. So yes, This is the fun part. You can do pretty much whatever you want however you want. Yes, the first draft will be a mess. (Trust me, mine was horrid!) But that's okay. You can go back and fix and edit later. Right now you're just getting ideas down on paper.
5. Take a Break
This is another tip a writer friend taught me. Once you've finished your story, take a break! You've worked hard, you deserve it. Set it aside for two weeks and don't touch it, Now if you're like me, this is so hard to do! I want things to look nice, and my first urge when I've finished writing is to edit. But it is best to just wait and take a break. That way when you get back into your story, you have a fresh perspective.
6. Edit and re-write
*cringes*. Did I just say this? Editing is my least favorite part, but it needs to be done! Editing is immensely hard for me. It's something I have to force myself to do. But it is a part of the writing process, so just do it. ;) In the end, it's worth it to be able to look over your document and be pleased with how it looks. Just like in any other thing in life, the hard work pays off! :)
So ... that's my writing process. Right now I am stuck on the editing part with two of my stories. But ... I finished up yet another edit of The Silent Blade, and now I'm ready to send it to my sweet editor for one last look-over before it's published!! It may take a little while until it's all said and done, but it's sooo close! And I'm really excited!! :D
Anyway, that's all for this post. :) Do you have a certain way that you write? Do you tend to research before or during your writing? What is your favorite part of the writing process? I'd love to know!