Wednesday, March 21, 2012

WIP Update - Constructive Destruction

***Warning, today's blog is full of pictures, but worth it!***

Thursday I posted about finishing the outlining process for my current WIP. I had gone through, marked each scene, and created flash cards to go with them. This is what happened next:

That's my book! Laid out scene by scene! All 91 scenes originally written! The reason there are some gaps is that some scenes did not contain complete pages. While this looks pretty, I quickly discovered it took up too much space to be practical. The goal was to lay out the book in order to contemplate the order of scenes and chapters, and while I might have been able to do that if I had laid it out on a bunch of tables (maybe set up in a square with me in the middle?), my floor just wasn't cutting it. So I gathered them back into a pile,  but I was still thinking the floor, so I spread them out a few scenes at a time around my knees.

That didn't last long. My joints don't like the floor that much, and I realized that I only needed to look at a handful of scenes at a time, so a table would do. Gathering up my supplies, I moved again.

A few scenes laid out to work on.
Like the card table? It's probably from the 70's... 

I used my tray table to put the manuscript piles. 
On the right, scenes to work on, on the left, completed ones paper clipped into chapters.
I loved watching the second pile grow!

In the middle of moving things around.

Since I don't outline first, I found this process really helpful. Especially because I wrote the first draft using alternating points of view (POV). It worked well at first, but by the time I had added in the rest of the adventurers, it just wasn't working well. I also realized, as I was reading through it, that I changed POV way too frequently. It felt like good long breaks in between each character as I was writing it, but reading? I'd change almost every page! That's just too confusing! 

I'm switching to using an omniscient narrator for at least the majority of the book, and that means I need to reorganize the order of some of the early scenes (where my characters were in two different places) and there was a little bit of shuffling through out the rest as well. Mostly in the chapter breaks. I kept my chapters at a pretty consistent word length during writing (it helped me to set goals and meet them) and had some horrible breaks as a result. I know that these might not be the "final" chapter breaks, but I think how I have them divided up currently will make the editing process much easier. Want too see how the final chapters look?

Isn't it pretty? Each chapter is marked with a sticky note in the top right, and has the 3x5 cards that matched the scenes in the top left corner. I'm currently working on taking the original draft and copying it into pages in a new Scrivener file in the order that I've rearranged things. Then I'll edit it chapter by chapter, with the old text and the new text in side by side windows. I have a list of things I want to remember in this edit, and I'll include those the best I can while changing the point of view. It'll be challenging, but it's also fun to watch the book evolve!

I'll probably do this with future WIP's as well, although hopefully they will need a little less work between first and second drafts! It still helped a lot with chapter and flow, and I liked being able to pick things up and move them around. I think a longer table would be nice though. Maybe I'll get a study room at one of the libraries next time!

~ Ruthie ~ 

Ps. How are your WIP's going?

1 comment:

  1. Such a pretty post! You make me want to dive back into my own WIP. :)