By now I’m sure you know I absolutely love Writer’s Digest…both the publication and the website. They have some wonderful tools, and I feel like I’ve become part of a little community there in the world of the writing prompts. But there’s another site that has helped my just as much (if not more, in it’s own way!) though I don’t visit it nearly as often.
For years I tried writing by the seat of my pants. I’d get pages into the story (once a whole chapter) and then……nothing. So I’d start another story, just to have it end after a couple pages as well. That cycle continued until I had (have) a folder on my computer full of failed book attempts that are going nowhere because they never had any direction to begin with.
I kind of gave up on writing for years, because every time I opened a file, I’d stare at the virtual page where the words disappeared, the blinking cursor mocking me in my lack of creativity. One day, a couple years ago, I was talking to my older sister on the phone, and she pointed me to this “great new website” she discovered. I jotted it down and took a look.
It has changed my writing life.
What is it, you ask? www.advancedfictionwriting.com This was where I first learned that there was another way than “pantsing” and that there was still hope for my stories that have been begging to be let out onto pages to be told. In it Randy Ingermanson outlines what he calls the “snowflake method” for writing.
I won’t get into the details about that, as he can explain it all so much better. But I will say that because of his method, I’ve got a rough outline (scene breakdown) for my novel that I’m going to use for NaNoWriMo. If pantsing doesn’t work for you, I’d suggest you check out his site. Maybe you’re a snowflake!