Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Writing Process

Here's another post on what a reader wanted to know about me. This one comes from Olivia Carter.

I want to hear about your basic writing process/schedule and advice for writing. That sort of thing :)

This has me laughing to myself. :) Why? I wish I had a writing schedule and process! I don't think I really have one, but I'll tell you what I do and how I go about things.

I would LOVE it if my day looked like this:

I get up early.
I work out.
I get the kids ready and take them to school.
I sit down and write for an hour.
I do some work around the house.
I fix lunch and put kids down for naps.
I write for a couple hours.
I pick up daughter from school.
I spend time with my girls and make dinner.
I enjoy my family.
I put the kids to bed.
I watch a movie with my husband.
I write for an hour.
I go to bed.

Oh, what a perfect life! Let me just tell you, I ONLY WISH...

Rather than tell you how my day usually plays out, I'll tell you what actually happens once I sit down to write! :)

Usually, I have no idea what I'm going to write when I sit down. On more than one occasion, and after looking through many writing books, I've been told not to start anything at the beginning. Because of the fact that it usually takes a while to get into 'the zone', you should start in the middle and then go back to the beginning when you've hit 'the zone.'

Do I do that?

Sometimes.

Every once in a while, (usually while in the shower) I'll have a scene flash through my mind and I can't get to the computer fast enough! Usually these scenes are out of order and then I go back and work them into the story. That doesn't always work, but usually.

Often, I force myself to sit down and start typing, knowing that I will probably delete most of it anyway. But it gets me writing. And sometimes it's not so bad. Sometimes, it's even pretty good. I allow the characters to take me on their journey. They will often surprise me.

As for my actual process? I've made outlines and book sketches on occasion. Sometimes I stick to them, sometimes I don't. If I feel like I'm in a big funk, I'll make one up so I know where I want to go. That's not always where I go, but at least it gives me a little direction.

Right now, I'm making up a word map of my book. I've already written the book, and I'm breaking it down, chapter by chapter. Each character has a different color so I can spot them at will. This has been time consuming, but is helping me see what's happening at a glance as opposed to sifting through pages. I can't tell you how much it works, because I've just started, but I'll let you know! :)

So that's how I write. Not very organized, I know. I did recently do a character interview with my hero and learned a great deal about him and where he's from. It was quite eye opening! I've had many questions about him. People do love him immediately and they don't understand why he does certain things. I wasn't real sure, but I just knew he did them. After interviewing him, I made a HUGE discovery about him. It explains EVERYTHING about him!!! Now, I can go through and hopefully portray him better.

So, hopefully some of these scattered thoughts gives you an idea into my writing mind. Probably not, but perhaps you enjoyed it anyway! :)

And don't forget to check out the contest listed below!

2 comments:

Diony said...

I love it! I need to do some character interviews.

Rachel Rager said...

Diony,
It only took one for me to be a believer. I used to think they were a little silly. But after interviewing Sterling and discovering some phsycological things, I'm a FIRM believer! Hopefully I can now figure out how to write it convincingly! :)