Monday, December 1, 2014

Deciphering the Code

     So I've been working on Broken Clouds in pieces, writing scenes as they strike my fancy.  But there's one problem...I'm still a little bit of a pantser.
     Plotters and pantsers are the two extremes of writing approaches.  Plotters are those that plan the entire story before starting to write.  Pantsters (from the expression "seat of the pants") tend to write the story, without previous planning, and see where it takes them.  Most people are a mix of the two extremes.
     I thought I had plotted this one out fairly well, but there are elements to the story (and even an unexpected character or two) that didn't show up until I started writing...Which meant I had a bunch of disjointed scenes that probably weren't even in the right order.
     It was my hope that I would be able to sort all of that out on my Word document.  After all, that's what copy and paste are for, right?  But it didn't work.  I needed to be able to see everything at once.

     So, this is what I did.  I printed it out and chopped the scenes up.  Now I can play with the order, spinning them around to see what would be most effective.  I can also scribble notes in the margins, changing the scenes to include more layers of my plot and making sure they flow from one to the next.  It really does make it easier to get myself out of this mess I created -- plus, it makes me feel like a professional.  :)
     As a fun side note, my dad came in as I was busily sorting and asked me if I was deciphering a secret code.
     "Why, yes, I am," I said, thinking quickly.  "If I solve it, I become a famous author, and if not, my story drops into oblivion."
     Not a bad analogy, if I do say so myself.


  1. THAT is such an amazing idea!! I have the same problem sometimes and it is so hard to get the scenes in the right order. I hadn't thought of doing this, but I am stealing this idea next time. I love it.