Making Connections, Deepening Story

When I went away to college many, many years ago, I moved about 5 hours away from home. Not far, probably, compared to some of you, but for the shy kid I was, it was a good distance. It meant that coming home for weekends was not a given, and it meant one miserable trip […]

What Would Caro Do?

Today, I will get closer to Caro, the hero of my YA WIP. Well, that’s the plan. I’m still plotting into the middle. I’d say “through” the middle, but not yet feeling that optimistic. And I’m realizing that part of the problem I’m having with the current mish-mash of scenes is that I haven’t honed […]

Back to the Drawing Board

Hi, I’m Becky, and I’m a control freak. Just ask my son. (Okay, on second thought, don’t do that.) I cannot do it. I tried. I really tried to write scenes out of order. To picture a moment that will happen (maybe? probably?) in my story and write about it. To let go of any […]

Thursday’s Target-A Rainbow of Sticky Notes

Yesterday, I reread Robin LaFevers post on index cards. Then I went out and bought some sticky notes. Two packs. Five colors each. Because I’m confused. Not from Robin’s post. From my own plot. Too confused to know what to write next. So I’m trying something that occasionally works for me, but only occasionally–going visual. […]

Writing Out of Order

Yesterday, I typed up a quick “summary” of my story, for a critique partner who’s coming up today to do some talking & brainstorming. Summary is in quotes there, because, well…there are lots of gaps and “I don’t know yets” along the way. But what I really noticed missing is any real sequence to the […]

Who is your Hero…Now and Then?

Recently, on Twitter, Susan Taylor Brown tweeted about character traits she was considering for her hero. She tweeted about pairs of traits, because she was contemplating which of each set of two traits was true for this hero. I wish I could remember them now, but what struck me was the very subtle difference between […]

Keeping an Eye on the Carrot

This week, and this weekend, I’m plotting my WIP. I’m trying to get as far as I can before Monday, when I’ve promised myself I’ll start actually writing. Here’s what I’ve been working on the past few days. I say “based,” because over the years, I’ve come to realize what categories of info I need […]

When the Itch Hits

Do you scratch it? I’ve been talking a lot online about the research & planning I’m doing for my YA historical novel. It’s been going great. I’m learning tons about my characters, about their wants and their conflicts, about their back-story and their future. I know there’s more I can learn. Except I’m itching to […]

Form: Learning It

Years ago, I read a writing book by Lawrence Block. I’m pretty sure it was Writing the Novel: From Plot to Print. The advice I remember most from this book was that the best way to learn plot was to go out and plot a book. One you liked. By a good writer. At the […]

Plotting the Middle–One Attempt to Find a System

I don’t know about you, but my brain does strange things in the early stages of thinking about a novel. Many of those things are strange in a¬†good way. Others, not so much. Lately, as I spend time with my current WIP, I’ll be immersed in some wonderful, creative brainstorming about my hero or another […]