Monday, 21 March 2011
A First Draft in 30 Days
Okay, it's true, I am trying to bring a bit more structure to my writing. I have just sent another novella winging off to my editor and again, I simply wrote by the seat of my pants. I hope they like it but for my next project I am determined to approach things with a bit more discipline. Some while ago, after an RNA conference, I travelled back on the train with a new Mills and Boon author. She had used a book called 'First Draft in 30 Days' by Karen S Wiesner. I skim read the book and thought it made a lot of sense. But being sometimes a lazy writer who likes to rush straight in when she has an idea, full of enthusiasm but little in the way of a plan, I put the book on a shelf and forgot about it.
Since then, I have had two or three ideas brewing and cannot focus on which one I want to run with. So, I got the 'how to' book out again and am determined to take more time over planning this next book. The reason is I want it to be multi-layered, I want to make my characters have more dimensions, many, many dimensions in fact so that the reader has the pleasure of peeling each layer away. That's something I like in my reading and would like to do more in my writing. Particularly after attending Kate Walker's workshop, I have seen that because romances are all about people and their internal conflicts the construction phase has to be pretty rigorous. Karen Wiesner's book has worksheets on constructing full lives for characters, on creating multiple settings in fact on building up an entire portfolio about your book before you even put fingers to keyboard. I have always wanted to be more focussed in my writing so perhaps the time has come. I'll keep you posted but until then, I am out to buy myself a lever arch file to put all those worksheets in and am feeling very optimistic about being more disciplined and hopefully more productive as a result!