As soon as I begin writing something--be it a short story, novella, or one of my books, I begin a personal ritual of sorts I have followed for decades. And I stop doing everything else. I don't read books, I don't watch T.V. or movies, I rarely go out unless it is somewhere I can take my composition book with me and write.
When I get the idea for the opening scene, I start writing. I don't use outlines or notes very often because I prefer to let the ideas spring off previous ideas. I'll usually know how I want the story to be told and end, but I don't plot it out. The key to it all is that opening scene.
Everything is handwritten (in cursive too!) at first. If I need to change something or make corrections, I put little notes to myself in the margins or in between the lines. If I need more space, I'll direct myself to extra added pages I call "inserts" that I sometimes have to number and then I staple them to the original page. I'm so used to using my directions and notes, but if I were to ask someone else to try to read them, they would be lost in seconds. I'll have to post some pics of actual pages sometime to see if any of my readers can make anything familiar out. Thankfully, I can write really, really small and still make it legible if I need to. Well, legible to me anyway.
Beth Gualda started this discussion 2 years ago. ( | permalink )