April 9, 2008

Writing Process Discussed!
New Prince's Orphans Artwork!

Here I am once again in The Burn Pit, Reader. First, as promised, I will discuss my particular approach to the writing process. Many beginning writers shy away from the word, "outline". True, it does carry a connotation of added labor with little perceived benefit, but I am here to testify to you the importance—even the necessity—of the outline.

During several periods in my education, an outline needed to be submitted with my writing project. I had, admittedly, done things backwards and based my outline on what I had already written. The writing itself was the easiest part. Why the added effort of formulating an outline when the ideas were already clear in my head? I have since learned the error of my ways and my outline is the first thing I pick up in the morning before I sit down at the Burn Pit to write.

I have read of how Philip Pullman organizes his thoughts on a huge sheet of construction paper. He will then add different colored Post-It notes to denote specific events that take place in his story. I do something very similar, but a little more contemporary.

I use a software spreadsheet, like Microsoft Excel, to organize particular 'segments' of the story. Later, I can shuffle these around, make them different colors to correspond with different character's point-of-view, or even push these off to the next book in the series. This gives me the freedom of writing out of order. For example, Pajo was comprised of fifty-one different segments. The first segment I wrote was "Pajo Meets Crimson" (Chapter 3). The next one that I wrote was "The Confrontation with Malluk" (Chapter 25). After writing all of the segments that I had planned in my outline, I pieced them together and separated them into chapters. This way, if you don't feel like writing that romantic scene in chapter six, you can work on that fight scene in chapter twenty-one! My advice is to take advantage of today's technology and organize all of your creative thoughts coherently where you can use them for inspiration as well as keep track of your progress.

Next, our good friend, David Morris, has given us all another sketch! This time it's of all four of the main characters that make up "The Prince's Orphans"! Again, David Morris is the Associate Producer of the Bristol International Comic Expo! This is the largest convention for the popular arts in the United Kingdom. To learn more, go to www.comicexpo.net. The sketch that he did of the four main characters can be found here.

More progress is being made on The Prince's Orphans, Reader. I'll be sure to share more in the future. Feel free to contact me to discuss anything about the books or the website.

Take care , Reader. Be well.

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The Prince's Orphans completion: 61/600 pages (10.17%)