I’m definitely a Timeliner. Did that on my own. Wrote short stories AROUND my characters instead of a first draft to get to know my characters and their world better.
Few people can sit down and start writing. Most of us hem and haw as we mentally walk through how to get from introduction to conclusion. It’s called ‘prewriting’ and everyone does it. What differs is the method–what best suits our communication style?
Here are four approaches I’ve seen work for writer friends:
Brainstorming, also called ‘mindmapping’, is a visual approach for collecting all the bits of a topic that may find relevance in the fullness of your manuscript. It enables writers to come up with many ideas without worrying about where they fit, leaving that for the writing process.
Here are basics for brainstorming your novel:
- There are no wrong answers.
- Get as many ideas as possible.
- Don’t evaluate ideas–just record them.
- Build on the suggestions of others (if you’re doing this as part of a critique group or writer’s workshop).
- Stress quantity over quality–get as many ideas as possible. Sort them…
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