I have a really strong idea for a novel and it is so strong that I could actually even write it. It’s just a great feeling to have these ideas swirling around in my head and actually be thinking like a writer. I’m starting to think that the plot and the structure of the story is something I should have totally worked out before I put the jam into the jam butty. So before I start properly writing the story, the scenes and the events, I am going to have my start, middle and end more or less set in stone.
I have already kind of worked out how the book starts and that has to be with a bang and not a whimper. I want to hook the reader right at the beginning so the pages keep getting turned. Hopefully I can also have my readers mostly sympathetic to my main character, so that they will want to find out what happens to him during the story.
I have been reading quite a few writers websites lately and it has been giving me even more ideas on how to proceed with the actually writing of the story. I saw one article recently that put forward a proposed workflow for creating a book in 60 days. It basically suggests that a writer should create 1500 new words per day. So on your first day you write your 1500 words and then on the second day, the first thing that you do is to rewrite those day one words before continuing on with your 1500 new words. To be honest I’m not totally sure about what is required in the rewrite stage. Is it just a revision to say what I said the day before but say it better, or do I look at the whole idea that was contained within it and have a complete rewrite. Maybe I’m supposed to do a little bit of both. We will see how it works as I do it.
The nuts and bolts, technique and grammar in a story
To a certain extent, I feel that this is one area that I lack some of the skills that I will need to do a professional job of writing this story. That’s okay though, as I expect to have to learn and improve as I go. I have seen some great articles that have suggested that it is a good idea to avoid the passive voice, as one way to improve the quality of the writing. Another important piece of advice I saw, was to show rather than to tell. I think that so far, that is probably the best advice I have got myhands on. In the explanation that I read, by doing the show rather than tell, it really brings the writing to life and makes it interesting.
Other creative endeavours – The five-minute podcast
I have rediscovered Audioboo and I am really enjoying the five-minute podcast format. It is possible to have a longer format with Audioboo if you pay a subscription. I don’t intend to do that because I like the brevity and the getting to the point that happens with just five minutes. Most times I can do my Audioboo when I’m out walking the dog. I am always out walking the dog and so it is easy for me to remember to do my Audioboo podcast. Some days I do it from the office using Amadeus Pro to make the recording, and this is usually on days when the weather is bad and would probably reduce the recording quality, for example with wind noise. When I’m recording on my iPhone while walking, I just have to remember to not record at the places on the walk where I’m going past gardens with barking dogs in them.
Visual creative endeavours – Digital drawing and painting
I have been trying out quite a few iPad drawing and painting applications. I really like using ArtStudio, Procreate, ArtRage and Ink Artist and they all offer different sets of tools and artistic possibilities. It is really very enjoyable to be making art on the iPad with a stylus and one of these art and drawing apps for iPad. I really love the speed of creation with digital art as it is so easy to choose brushes, colour and other tools. It is incredibly easy to add lines, shapes and colours, to take them away and replace them with something better where necessary and not be hampered by the physical constraints of real paint and canvas.