Tag Archives | Plot

Revision for Pantsers

I recently finished a fairly major revision on my contracted novel that nearly killed me. How did it almost kill me? I wrote 32,000 words in 7 days in order to get it turned in on time. (I essentially rewrote the entire last act of the book from scratch.) Why did I throw out the last third of my book? Because it made it better. Here’s the thing about revision: I hate it. I am […]

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From Pantser to Plotter

The more I write, the more of an outliner I become. I literally started the first draft of What’s Left of Me with nothing but a blank word document and Eva’s voice in my mind. The world-building, the other characters, the plot, all developed over the course of that first draft. Of course, that meant the first draft wasn’t very good. Characters switched names halfway through. Plot lines were dropped, changed, or added. Settings morphed from scene […]

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What happens in the middle?

I’ve talked about beginnings (here, too) and endings (and here’s one from Sooz), but recently someone mentioned they’d really like some thoughts on middles. A lot of times, when people get stuck in the middle of their book, it’s because they’re not totally sure what the middle is supposed to do.. Obviously the beginning sets up conflicts and the ending resolves them, but the middle? The middle is all opportunity to make things worse. Here’s […]

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Guest Post: Lessons Learned from Hong Kong Movies

Guys, Grady’s new book Horrostör is incredible. Like, I got a copy of this in the mail, opened the package and snickered at the cover (and how the entire book is laid out like an Ikea catalog). Then I started reading… …and two hours later, I finished the book. I COULDN’T PUT IT DOWN. It was laugh-out-loud funny and also thoroughly terrifying. Plus, there was incredible character development, a thoroughly twisty plot, and OH MY GOSH, what […]

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Adding New Ideas vs. Knowing When to Streamline

I received an awesome question post in my forum last week, and I thought I’d answer it today. 🙂 I thought my first novel was done except for proofreading, after being through many CPs and two passes with a professional editor I hired. Now that I’m about 25% into its sequel, I keep discovering new things about my characters that I’d like to go back and put in the first one as a connecting detail […]

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