Tuesday, July 16, 2013

iWriteNetwork Summer Workshop - Class Report

by Donna K. Weaver

On Saturday we got to hear from the awesome Nancy Campbell Allen. The class was about outlining, and I'm a pantser. Nancy talked about bringing elements of both approaches. It's something she called being a Hybrid. I love her ideas!

Following are my notes from the class.

Outlining Can Be Fun

Hybrid (features of outlining while leaving some discovery writing of the pantser)
  • organized
  • clear vision
  • Avoid paralysis
  • still maintain a sense of creativity
  • Make the process your own

Where to begin
  • binder or file (this can be digital, but Nancy uses a physical binder that she creates)

Outlining Your Novel

1. Brainstorming
  • character idea
  • setting
  • cool job
  • what if questions
  • this section is utilized to the very end of the writing
  • Think of 4 or 5 things that could happen in the books and 2 things that can complicate things
  • What settings will the complications demand?
  • Which character will be the protagonist for that complication?
  • Once you're done highlight the things you decide to use

2. ICA - Individual Character Analysis
  • physical stats
  • family and origin including birth order
  • personality traits
  • strengths and weaknesses
  • goals in life
  • most treasured possession
  • motivations
  • how would they react to any given situation

3. Outline - can be a first draft
  • What is your theme?
  • Make a list of things you need to happen
  • Think in specifics
  • Allow yourself to sink into the story
  • If the story strays...either the story will come back to your outline or you can adjust your outline. The theme should have stayed the same

4. Scene Maps
  • This keeps you from staring at the blinking cursor
  • Determine your scene goal
  • Lists scenes sequentially
  • These are your "Next Time Notes"

5. Running Edit

When you change something as you're writing, have of list of things you will need to change to the beginning.  Like if on page 50 you decide it's better to have a different profession, note the page and say XXX is a wedding planner from here to the end.

6. Research Questions

Make a list of questions as you go--things you need to find out and answer later. Don't get sidetracked! UNLESS you're stuck.

7. Sources

Maintaining a list -- Pinterest (suggested by Amber Argyle)

8. Tracking Sheet

List Chapter, pages x - x, word count for chapter, brief summary


Sherry Gammon said...

Great ideas! For #5, I highlight the text in yellow and make a note, but your idea would be easier! Thanks!
and for #6 Love this idea. So easy to get side tract! Thank you again!!

Taffy said...

Good post! Thank you!

Cindy M Hogan said...

Love, loved, loved this class

eprestu 310

Nancy Campbell Allen said...

Girlfriend, you take awesome notes! I had such a good time with you all!

Cathy said...

Thank you for sharing this. I like to fly by the seat of my pants, but sometimes a little organization makes sense.

Betsy Love said...

Wow, great concepts! I'm such a pantser, but I keep thinking I really need to organize myself and then my writing might be more productive!