The Write Side of Life: Work in Progress Update – Chapter 2

Chapter two is done; handwritten and transcribed, first and second draft done!

homer

I’ve got to say this way of working, handwriting and then transcribing seems to really suit the way I work. I’m not really someone who uses outlines. I tend to write a general set of paragraphs that describe how I want the story to start and finish, and a vague of idea of what happens in the middle.  I am very much a ‘pantser’ and I like to see where the story is going as I write it in a similar way to how someone would read it for the first time.

plot

Therefore this method of writing allows me to slow down a touch and sort my thoughts out. I can reflect on what I’ve just written and think clearly about how the next chapter will progress and link up to the previous one.

Now, I know that you’re probably thinking at this stage, ‘Slow your roll, Kid. You’re only two chapters in‘ but I have to say, I’ve never felt this comfortable and confident going into my third chapter before so something must be working, right? right? Guys? Hellooooo……

We’ll see if this positive energy keeps up as the work continues so stay tuned. As for how chapter two went? Well, pretty good I think. There wasn’t many speed bumps which is something I was nervous about. There was a lot of exposition that needed to go into this chapter as one of the main characters is set on his mission but I think I got it all in there without any info-dumping, and ‘hopefully’ I’ve also managed to keep it compelling. Who knows? Maybe when I read it back for editing, I’ll feel differently but for now, all is good in the hood.

So, it’s onward and upwards to chapter three which I am currently in the thick of as we speak. This one may be trickier as I’m changing character focus for this chapter but we shall see. I’ll let you know as soon as it’s finished but until then…

porky

Thanks for reading,

Tim

p.s.

Did you notice a few piccies in this post? Hopefully it will make my ramblings a bit more interesting.

The Write Side of Life: A New Project & A New Approach.

In my last post I talked briefly about a new story I was working on and how I was going to try and document how it goes, chapter by chapter. Well, here we go.

The new story that I’m working on is one that I’ve had floating around my head for years. It’s one that I always imagined writing as a novel and after trying it out as a short story, a previous attempt at a novel and even at one time a seriously misguided attempt at a graphic novel – don’t worry the pages of that monstrosity have long been destroyed – but finally after gaining some more experience of writing and life, I think that I’ve finally cracked how to make it work.

You see, I’ve always believed in the old adage that if you’re a writer, you should write the story you want to read, if you’re a film maker (which I’m not), then you should make the film you want to watch and so on and so fore. The problem is that there isn’t just one story that I want to read, they’re are hundreds; sci-fi ones, fantasy ones and action and adventure ones.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, when I was trying to work out what I was going to write next, I came across the story I mentioned before as well as some similar stories that were in various states of disrepair. Looking through various notes, outlines and drafts, I figured out that why not write all the stories I want to read. With some jiggery-pokery and intense head scratching, I fleshed out the main characters to make a crew who you will hopefully want to follow on an action packed adventure across a war-torn galaxy and develop a back story and legend that combines my favourite space opera and fantasy elements into hopefully an exciting universe for this crew to inhabit and it all started to come together as a coherent, workable plot.

Just as I was working on this outline, I came across this video:

In it fantasy author Jon Skovron shows how he writes his first drafts in fountain pen. I won’t go into his process here, watch the video it’s well worth it, but I can tell you it inspired me to try a new approach to my writing.

So, I went and got a shiny new Moleskine notepad and a left handed fountain pen (for your information it’s a Lamy Safari pen and it’s lovely to write with) and I got scribbling. I found this method, writing my first draft out in pen, is really working for me. I finished my first chapter last week and transcribed into it Word in a few hours, making corrections to the first draft as I went. By doing this chapter by chapter, I’ve found I’m simultaneously writing my first and second drafts, with corrections and ammendments thus making me work much quicker and completeinn one round of edits as I go, result!

So, the first chapter is done and I’ve started with the second. I’ll update you on that when it’s transcribed. I’ll also post a more detailed post about the first chapter later this week. In the meantime, here’s a short blurb on what the new story is:

Starblade (working title) tells the story of a crew of scavengers working aboard their ship, The Fury, scratching out a living by selling junk they find on wrecks of old starships. When they come across a mysterious old derelict that could finally be their big score, they unwittingly unleash an evil that spreads across the galaxy. Years, later in a bid to make amends, the crew of the Fury, undertake a mission to deliver a weapon that could destroy this evil force and end years of war. However, there are other parties that want the weapon, some for revenge, some to rule and they will stop at nothing to get it.

How does that sound? Like something you would want to read, let me know in the comments below or tweet or facebook me.

I look forward to hearing what you think. Also let me know how you approach new projects, be they writing, film making, art, anything.

Also be sure to check out the books of Jon Skovron. They’re pretty damn good.

Once again, thanks for reading!

Tim