Monday, October 06, 2014

Outlining Your Novel

Writing Stats: Edits 80%

So anyway back to the world of writing that's about to get crazy in about three weeks.

It's time for my favorite time of the year NATIONAL NOVEL WRITING MONTH otherwise known as NaNoWriMo. I cannot emphasize how much I love NaNoWriMo. It gives me the fire to get that draft done and to spend countless amounts of time editing it so it's awesome!

In order to help other writers with NaNoWriMo I'm going to do a series of post to help you prepare for it.

So you want to write a book? Well NaNoWriMo is the perfect time to write that book you've always said you were going to write but never had the time.This is your chance.

Often a writer will ask themselves "what do I write." Today's post is something that is going to be very useful to you to get those important scenes written.

First start with a clean document.





Then make a navigation panel in word for your chapters. If you don't know how to do this look at the blog post on Natasha Neagle site! http://natashaneagle.com/organizing-your-manuscript-in-word/

(TIP: Her trick is going to save me so much editing time!)




Once you already have in mind how many chapters your book is going to be just add them to the navigation plane before you start. You can always add more later. (Again see Natasha's blog post)

After you have completed adding all your chapters to the navigation plane start doing little bullets for each scene in a chapter. For my example I'm just going to use Harry Potter I don't want to spoil my super secret project.



Then when it comes time to start writing just write the scene like you outlined on top. You can just subtract how many words were your outline from the total.

That's one of my secrets to survive NaNoWriMo! I would write each scene underneath it's bullet point! Here is how this helped me last year. I was able to see the bullet point above each scene I was writing. It would help just in case I couldn't figure out which scene I was going to work on next. Each of my scenes average to about 2k. 

Then when it came time to the revisions I would weave all the scenes together. Plus with Natasha's new trick in word it's going to save me so much time scrolling through the document. This is one way I outline a novel before NaNoWriMo normally I would plot as I go along. But this trick I found saves me countless times of copying and pasting scenes around in a single word document.

I hope you get the chance to try out this outline! I'm going to see about posting another outline for NaNoWriMo prep. If you use my trick let me know how you like it!