I just recently updated my Goodreads page, and am doing a Goodreads Giveaway for book one My Delicate Destruction in #theWolfegangseries and I’m really excited about it. I’ve have 150 people add it today alone.
I’ve decided to write this blog post because I get asked this question a lot. How do I write, how do I come up with ideas and plot, how do I get it all down, etc? I figured I should write it all down so anyone can read it. I guess I should start from the beginning 🙂 #theWolfegangseries is my first published book series, so I will begin with how I came up with the idea for story.
I don’t really remember. I wrote the very first edition about ten years ago. I loved time travel and decided I wanted a character to wake up in the future. Kind of like that weird Science Fiction show that aired for awhile, Cleopatra 2525.
It starred Gina Torres, which as you know by now I’m a huge fan of, because she plays who? ZOE WASHBURNE in #Firefly. (If you’re really geeky, you know she played a Goddess on an episode or two of Angel lol)
You have to love the Science Fiction community. It seems to be such a small pool of actors.
I have to say, Firefly and all these dorky Sci Fi shows from 1990-2010 really inspired me. I grew up on Star Trek, Stargate SG-1, and Firefly. That’s what I watched in my teen years. And that’s how I formed, and molded my idea for the Wolfegang series. I took all of my favorite things in Science Fiction, and kind of shook them up and put them together. If I were to describe the series with a this with that, it would be a mix of Dark Angel and Firefly.
So what next?
Creating the plot/outline:
The next thing I did was to write down everything I knew I wanted to happen, whether it was in order or not. I use notebooks, or flashcards. Either way I always write it down by hand because it helps me personally. I’m not sure why, but it does. If I write down the plot points on flash cards I can move them around with having to worry about scratching things out, or getting confused. I just place them where I want them on the timeline, or move them around accordingly.
Mind you these plot points are very vague, and all over the place. Example: 1. Girl wakes up in the future. 2. Finds friends on a spaceship. 3. Looks for her brother. 4. Gets into trouble.
That’s literally all I had to go off of. But then I take each point I do have, and try to expand on that.
So on and so forth until I have it broken down into books, and chapters. This way I don’t have to worry about every tiny detail right away. Otherwise it feels like you’re going mad.
Each writer, and writing process is different. This is just what works for me, and mostly keeps the madness at bay.
Next, First draft:
OMG, this part and the blood, and pain….it’s like pulling teeth sometimes, and sometimes it’s easy and flows, but you know deep in your heart every word you write is terrible, and awful, and it’s the most shit writing ever, and you just want to lay your head on the keyboard and die.
(Oh, Captain Ma-Hammer.)
There is no real process for me in regards to the first draft. I start at the beginning of my outline and write. If I get stuck, or I don’t feel like it any more, I jump to another story. I have short stories for #theWolfegangseries and I work on those. Sometimes it helps jumpstart the juices again.
Once all the plot points for that book are written down, I go back to the beginning. Luckily I have a tendency to forget things I write almost instantly. It sucks when I have to go back for reference on the next book, but it’s awesome when you have to edit your own stuff.
First editing phase/second draft:
I go through and write comments. Marking where I need to add more description, actions, or whatever. I mark where there needs to better transitions from one scene to another. I mark entire paragraphs that need to be reworked because they sound dumb as hell. And then I mark where I could/should add more to the story. This is the part where I can easily add 10-30k words to my book. I do it until my pages look like this-
And then I go back to the beginning, and write in, fix, and do whatever I marked until the blood has been washed away.
Second editing phase/third draft:
This is the part where I address my editing list. Over time I’ve made a list of mistakes or issues I’ve found in my own work. Words that I use too much, errors I know I make, and words I search for to avoid using passive voice. I might post that list someday, but it’s pretty average stuff.
Then I go back and read through it again as I format it. Usually this whole process is done in chapters of three. That way I can send them off to my editor as soon as possible. When I go through it while formatting, I only look for typos, missed words, and missed punctuation. This is my cut off point. Otherwise I would be in the process of rewriting forever. I have to put that boundary on myself.
(Don’t get stuck in that insecurity phase.)
Sending it off to my editor(s):
Technically I have two editors. I pay them both. Why two editors? Because I know no one is perfect. Will the first editor see EVERY mistake? Probably not. But the second editor can catch most of the ones that were missed. They are my proofreaders, who add in readers comments or questions. Things I might not see, like “Hey, I thought she was sitting at the desk, not on the bed?” and stuff like that. Three chapters at a time. When I get the chapters back, I send the next three. Then go through their edits to make sure I agree with them. I use Word in the beginning. Because it’s easy for my to just accept changes. It does all the work for me. Then I go through again and address all the comments. When I’m done I send it to my second editor. Rinse. Wash. Repeat.
I’m not going to lie, when I get my work back I feel like this initially –
But I know it’s good for me, and for my writing. When I am done with all the edits I feel really good about it. If I ever am unsure of a comment I ask my S.O. what he thinks. If both editors comment on the same thing, then I really do need to change it, lol.
That’s pretty much all I do for the actual writing process. My next blog post will be everything I do when I have the book “done” but get it all ready to publish. Nanowrimo is coming up, and I think I’m going to use it to finish writing the first draft of my first short story for #theWolfegangseries and the first draft of book five. The first draft of book four is done, and I’m about to start the process with all the blood. I love it and hate it at the same time.
Writing gives me a feeling that’s hard to describe, but it’s something like this:
Don’t you love how Firefly just applies to everything?