• Blog

    October Snapshot: Order, Outlines and Other News

    Happy fall! We’re only 9 days into the month of October, but a lot of book-related things have already happened. I presented in a Nanowrimo prep event for the local library and had the pleasure of attending the wonderful Lana Ghannam’s book launch. In short, it’s been a great start to the fall season (I say fall, but I live in Florida. It’s been a mild 81 degrees today 🌅.)

    Anywho, there’s one other writing event to celebrate this month: I finished my novel outline!

    The “final” stats are:

  • Blog

    Nanowrimo Orlando

    Hello! It’s only October, but Nanowrimo season will be here before you know it (in four weeks, actually. Yikes/yay!) In preparation for Nanowrimo, I had the pleasure of giving a workshop on developing your main character. I promised the folks in attendance that I’d post the PowerPoint, so here’s me making good on that promise.

  • Blog,  The Writing Process

    A Novel Outline: An Exercise in Plotting (Part I)

    Howdy!* In my last post, I spoke briefly about two categories of writers: pantsers and plotters. I didn’t go into much detail, but I did drop a link to Jane Friedman’s wonderful blog. To be brief: a plotter tends to enjoy structure (i.e. writes a novel outline) while a pantser tends to enjoy discovery (i.e. writes what comes to mind). As with most things, there will be overlap, so these definitions aren’t all encompassing.

    Pantser (usually doesn't have a novel outline)
    Plotter (usually has a novel outline).

    Despite being the most Virgo of Virgos in almost every other way (from my love of spreadsheets/lists to my love of order), I’m 70% a pantser. I’ve always written out of order, jotting down scenes and sections as they come. Don’t get me wrong. I always know the general plot, and I spend a lot of time getting to know the characters/researching before I begin writing scenes. But I’ve never been one to know scene by scene what’s coming.

    When I started my most recent project, I made a promise to write freely and openly in July and August. In fact, the goal was to avoid plotting wherever possible (in favor of getting words/ideas on the page). But it’s September now and, in the spirit of doing something both anti- and pro-Virgo**, I’ve decided to set a different goal for myself: write a novel outline.


  • Blog,  How to write a novel,  Novel writing workshop

    Novel Writing Workshop: 4 Ways to Get Story Ideas

    Getting ahead of myself.

    Howdy! In my last post, I promised to discuss the process of writing a query letter and synopsis. Well, I realize I may have been getting a bit ahead of myself.

    Before we can even think of writing a query or synopsis, we have to write a novel, and I’ve yet to cover that on this site. Because it’s a long process, I’ve decided to break it into mini novel writing workshops.