Preptober, Writing Mechanics

What is the Story You Want to Read?

How does this author not have more subscribers!?

I’ve never contemplated joining someone’s Patreon, but I’m not going to lie, I think I might join Abbie’s.

I found her information HUGELY helpful and I will definitely be applying her tips to my upcoming NaNoWriMo story. In fact, now I’m thinking instead of posting excerpts from my actual novel, I might post the back story of my main character – sort of like a teaser to her “official” story. I’ve been toying around with this idea for quite some time… maybe it’s time to take that idea off the shelf and dust it off.

I also really like her put a board on Pinterest idea, too. I am DEFINITELY inspired by looking at various faces, locations, etc. and I think that would definitely help me.

Good thing that’s on my NaNoWriMo Bingo card.

She just earned herself a new subscriber. I look forward to watching more of her videos.

Video Summary

Step 1 – Choose your Genre
Step 2 – Find your Theme
Step 3 – Meet your Protagnoist – and his/her baggage
A. Desire (the thing they want + think will make his/her happy)
B. Fear (the thing stopping him/her from going after his/her desire)
C. Misbelief (the thing him/her mistakenly believes is true about the world [exact opposite of your theem])
Step 4 – Describe your vibe – three (or more) words
Step 5 – Pick a location

Bonus Tips
Make an aesthetic board – example Pinterest
Make a playlist
Give it a working title

 

Video Summary

Theme – aka the truth you want to teach your reader

Step 1 – why does your story matter to you?
Step 2 – flip the truth on it’s head and make it a lie
Step 3 – find origin of that misbelief – digging into your protagonist’s past
step 4 – Look for patterns – your protagonist acting on his/her misbelief again and again
A. How does my protagonist cement his/her misbelief as a truth again and again
Step 5 – Tell the truth – crafting protagonist’s “aha moment”

Writing Mechanics

How To Solve Writing a Mystery

A bug bit me.

And I’m not mad about it.

Have you noticed I’ve been blogging more? I think I’ve blogged more this past month than I have in the past two years.

I’m blogging more because I’m exercising my writing muscles. I want to start writing more fiction and to do that, I need to write SOMETHING.

I’ve been wanting to write a mystery. I love mysteries and have been really enjoying the mysteries I’ve been reading lately. (Pst – follow me on Goodreads). But the question is, how the HECK do I write a mystery?

I mean, I can WRITE the story, but how do I structure it? How do I write a story that the reader doesn’t see through in the first ten pages?

I’ve been watching a lot of writing vlogs lately. This one from Alexa Donne caught my eye.

Video summary:

1. What is a (bonkers) reason for someone to kill someone?
A. Motivation / Reason

2. Come up with alternates / additional reasons for someone to kill your victim
A. Red herrings / Misdirects

3. Third-Act / Climax (about 70/80% into the story)

4. Brainstorm of good victims – archetypes – list characters around the archetype

5. Who is the killer?

6. Who is the main character?
A. Outsider or an Expert

7. Construct the setting

8. How to approach law enforcement involvement
A. Local cops vs. FBI
B. How does legal authority play in your story?

9. How is the body discovered?

10. How does your main character get involved / find the body?

I have to say, this is helpful information. I’m a pantser, meaning, I write by the seat of my pants. I don’t outline. However, I’m working on changing that because though I can furiously write a story and it’s thrilling to see where it takes me, I inevitably get stuck, then frustrated, then disgusted and I end up tossing my story. I want a more hybrid approach. Where I’m outlining to a point, but then giving myself the freedom to see where it takes me. I think they call it the headlight method.

“Writing by your headlights simply means that you plan the first part of your story then write it. When you get that section written, you’ll be able to see what happens next and can plot out the next few scenes or chapters.”

Learning about the art of writing motivates me!