Date: Feb 16, 2015 09:56 am Title: Going back to Square 1
For outlining, how would you go about it in a sequel? Because in my first story all the action happened and now I want to write about life after but how could I do that without making it seem like I'm trying to add drama in every chapter? In life, there will always be drama but I don't want to make it seem super cliché.
Off the top of my head, I think there are several questions you need to ask yourself before attempting to outline it. These will help guide your outline:
-What do you hope to add to the characters by having a sequel? Do you want to add another facet to their character development?
-What was left unfinished in your first story?
Drama is a vague word. What kind of drama are you adding to each one? Intense emotional experiences? Heavy conversations? Touching scenes? Or all violence, arguing, sex, etc? Think about balancing them....maybe even having a chapter/chapters build up to the drama, so that it is more spread out.
Hope this helps.
Date: Feb 15, 2015 04:04 pm Title: Going back to Square 1
I don't know what category my outlining style would be in.
Here's an example of mine:
Chapter 1: Brown Eyes
- Group of kids (enter names here) are at Michael's Place w/o his permission
- Semaj is hanging out with Kearston <---- (her cousin)
- Semaj goes to bathroom, Michael shows up and kicks everyone out
- Semaj notices everyone gone, Michael holds her at gunpoint in headlock
- Drives her home (enter reasons why she can't find other transportation)
- Leaves her jacket in his car, he brings it to her school the next morning
Day (of the week): I failed to write it, lmaoooo
And in some cases when there's a particular line I want Michael (or any other character) to say I'll write it down and in corporate it into its rightful spot. I also try to right the events I want to happen in chronological order but usually the dialogue between the characters comes naturally from the top of my mind. I don't know if that's bad or good, LOL. It just works for me and so far I've written 45 chapter outlines for Gangsta Lovin' as you can see I need to right more because I'm creeping up on chapter 37 right now and before I know it I'll be at 45.
Now when you said "outline your main characters" now I don't do that for the chapters... but I should probably start. It seems to make things a little smoother when the drama is around, buuuuutttt.... I usually will outline my characters in how their personalities/maturities are from beginning to end of the story.For example in Gangsta Lovin' under my summary that I wrote in my notebook I have Michael's name, a physical description, and then his personality description and then I write goals for him. By this chapter his personality should be this, by this chapter he needs to be showing this, by this chapter he needs to act like this, ect. I only do it for my main TWO characters; Michael and my OG.
If my goal doesn't meet that said chapters then I just push it with the next goal... and I make SURE that he has it then. I just don't want it to be like chapter 1 Michael doesn't want to be in love, he doesn't want love at all, and then by chapter 7 I'm writing how in love he is and this and that... that is NOT what I want. I want it to be gradual and not just coming out of the blue.
This was great advice though, now on to the next advice chapter!
Oh and I find it sort of funny because like the example of a chapter outline for me above, I can have 6 points (just like what I showed) and have a good 3,000-5,000 word chapter. I find that sort of cool. But yeah! Moving on!
For chapter one, I'd consider that overplotting unless you are going directly into writing it. If that's written a week in advance, I'd consider it overplotting. I think dialogue is best when it flows...as it often does when written in the moment. I think your character outlines sound fairly on point. I'd only do that for the main characters, as well. Though, when doing the story w/chapter outlines, I'd probably include the characters that will be in each chapter. That way, you can spot if there are too many supporting characters. Remember, too many pics/names to remember mean that the reader is more likely to get confused.
I like your point about having so many words for six points. I think that is key - not seeing this points as simply check marks to speed through. They are to be expanded upon and integrated into a larger narrative.
Date: Feb 15, 2015 12:25 pm Title: Going back to Square 1
Outlining is probably what I need to be doing the most. I'm so bad about getting like off the plot or having too many conflicts going on. Turns that just after looking back on them don't really seem natural... stuff like that.
In my head I think I'm 'outlining' when I write the chapters on my phone at work because then I transfer them over to Word on my computer and like really drill down and 'try' to catch errors or things that don't make sense.
My stories might seem like they have a lot of views, but it's probably just me going in each chapter 100 times re-reading what I wrote to make sure I'm on track.
PS: I dont' know what goes on in the after life... but one thing I do think is a possibility, Michael's spirit could be all around us right now watching us write these fan fics so whether or not he approved of them or had the time to read them when he was alive... I'm sure he's well are of them now LOL
Outlining can be a pain in the beginning, but in the end it does ease a lot of those problems.
I think you get a lot of reads ;)
I believe in the afterlife and reincarnation. He could be, though I prefer to think he is looking over his kids. <3
Date: Feb 15, 2015 10:58 am Title: Going back to Square 1
I'm more of a mind map kind of writer. I never really write down my mental notes. I'm starting to learn from that though with CTTG. I started jotting down points for future chapters even while writing the current ones because I figure plot structure that will fit the story in the future. It really helps. Especially for the last chapter.
I think I'm guilty of over plotting. Like you mentioned I had too many antagonists in the kitchen. Some are still necessary but I've taken a red pen to those who would only make things more complicated than they need to be. It's all a learning process for me.
After reading each of your segments I mentally go through my mind trying to figure out if anything fits for any of my stories. When it does you're usually spot on and I try to implement your recommendations for the next chapter without loosing the focus of my initial trajectory.
Thanks for this!
Cant wait for the Consistency segment!!
More soon <333
Mind maps are also written, their just more free flow ;)
I think it's easier to overplot when it's all in one's head. Putting things down on the screen (or paper) gives that visual alert of "too much" when the screen gets crowded or you find yourself on the Xth page.
I'm glad you find this helpful. I was so sure that I'd be told to "shut up" after the first segment or two.
It's going Michael then Consistency, so hopefully it'll be before next Sunday.
Date: Feb 15, 2015 09:32 am Title: Going back to Square 1
yassss outlining!! let's make coherent stories peopleeee ;) ;)
although i've definitely been a victim of overplotting. in fact, i am at the moment! yaaaaay! so frustrating when you realize it'd be pretty dang hard to get to the original point you had plotted months and months ago.
i hope you do a part on writing michael soon! i feel like that'll be crazy interesting. a lot of material to work with there...
LOL agreed. I think it's fairly obvious when an author doesn't have an outline for their story. As a reader I am usually left at a complete loss as to what they are trying to do, at least once or twice.
If you feel like it'll be hard, maybe it's time to take a step back and wonder where you are going to add a chapter and/or if you still want that to be your original point. Sometimes things do change when the storyline is over-structured.
I'll hopefully do that one in the next few days. I honestly didn't think I'd get this one done until Wed at the earliest. Sleep is for the smart, and sometimes I'm just not that smart....
Date: Feb 15, 2015 05:10 am Title: Going back to Square 1
ah the memories of writing outlines in high school lo those many years ago..
I am one of the writers who can actually cope with not actually writing the outline..instead I just plan the chapters and how I want it to go in my head, as well as the course of the fic..and chapters usually turn out ok content wise. but maybe one of these days I will try the outline, not sure yet.
I still always outline. It makes filling in gaps easier. When it comes time for a certain segment (or in this case, a chapter), I start by filling it in more. What I want to see happen. That quickly gives me an idea of what I want to convey and how to transition between one point and another. It sounds like you are able to maintain the full "set" mentally, which I'm envious of. I do that, but then I feel like I forget a detail or lose the essence with which I wanted to convey a bit of information. I think of it as how Michael used to always have a recorder or paper on his person. He wanted to capture the inspiration when it came, so as to make sure he didn't lose it.