Wednesday, January 7, 2009

New Year, New Story

Well I’m back into the regular grove of things again. Miss M is back in school, thank goodness. I really treasure our time together, but a girl has got to get some work done once in awhile and taking Miss M to my office wasn’t cutting it. I’m very lucky that my real job is very slow in the winter so for her holiday I get to spend lots of time with her. We caught up on movies, went to the ballet (Nutcraker), and the museum. Plus slept in every morning! By nature I’m a night owl and very disinclined to wake on my own before the sun comes up, which is when I need to get out of bed during school. So on our little hiatus I got to stay up until 3 in the morning and wasn’t brain dead the next morning for only getting 3 hours of sleep. Yeah me!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. We had family come in and they promptly spread the flu in our household. Out of seven of us, only Miss M escaped the epidemic. Unfortunately her allergies morphed into a nasty cold and asthma so while she didn’t have the upset stomach, we are now on a couple of inhalers for the next few weeks.

A couple of weeks ago I was checking out Angela Knight’s blog and she recommended a writing book by Karen Wiesner that sounded interesting. I put it on my Christmas list for hubby, which he didn’t get (he HATES trying to buy books for me) but he did give me a nice big gift card to B&N. So I promptly went and purchased this book. I’m about a third of the way through it and so far I’m really liking it. For me, it’s making me focus working out all my plot lines and making sure they mesh before I even write Chapter One on a page.

I’ve done Candace Haven’s Fast Draft Course and that was great. But I just had an idea in my head and ran with it. I always seem to get stuck in the middle trying to figure out how to make it work with the ending in my head. Karen Wiesner’s book forces you to focus on the middle and lay it all out in a very detailed outline. She says by the end of the outlining you really have a first draft. And I can see where she says that, you detail the outline so far that all you really need to do is just go in and write the actual scenes. You’ve already put in what is supposed to happen in it. Her method has worked all the details out that have plagued me during my previous attempts. So I took a story idea and I'm running with the new system. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

What system seems to work the best for you?


Leah Braemel said...

I've heard that book mentioned at a conference I went to and the speaker used it. Then another course I took mentioned it as well. Since this is the third mention of it, I'm starting to think it's a book I'd better look into.

Good to hear everyone's a bit better healthwise and you enjoyed your sleep-ins. Always a good thing.

Leah Braemel said...

By the way, if you stop by my blog, Miss M stars in a slideshow over there.

Dani said...

Hi there!

Sorry I've been silent lately. The sleep-ins have great. I so miss them. I haven't adjusted all that well yet. I only got 4 hours sleep last night.

The book is pretty good. She even has a chapter that devotes her attention to works that are in process where the writer gets stuck and shows how to go back outline it and then finish the plotting.

If you don't get anxious and rush out, I'll try to send it to you when I'm done.

BTW - Thanks on the mentions. I got to read them but since I had Miss M I didn't get to spend a lot of time on the blogs. Trying to catch up these next two weeks.