A new story to craft

Oct 2013 013The whirlwind of book activities has now calmed and my calendar is no longer full of wild scribbles across future dates. I have picked up a 2014 calendar because I have events already to add.

This is the storyboard I created for Checkmate First Mate a few years ago. This book was my learning-to-craft-a-novel story. Years ago I’d written by the-seat-of-my-pants, which is a fun way to write, but doesn’t produce a story worth reading. Over the years this story remained fun to work on, between big life events and other challenges. Each time I learned a new process to strengthen my plot, story. characters, theme, or concepts, this was the novel I’d pull off the shelf to apply what I’d learned. It tickles me that this is my First Published Novel.

I’ve been dithering over which should be my second novel. I finally chose. It is a story that was drafted before CMFM, but the characters and story still speak to me. It’s also complete, and titled. When I pulled all the files out of my cabinet and started looking through them I was pleased to also see contest critiques and extensively personal rejects from editors. (That’s a big deal, when an editor takes the time to send paragraphs of pointers!)

So I began reviewing the actual binders. That’s my process, I create craft binders with sheet protectors and colored graphs and charts. The storyboards are created in a planning flurry and post-its are added and moved around during the early stages. Then it just sits there and gets dusty and is only studied when I’m stuck. (Or is folded closed and filed with others awaiting my time and interest.)

When I opened the story board for this work-in-process, I was surprised it lacked pictures. It was multicolored post-it notes, hand printed in different color text. Then I noticed there were no emotional journey graphs for these characters, in the binder. I developed these graphs, to supplement Micheal Hauge’s Story Structure Template, two years ago and even did a quick workshop on it once.

Before I got too deep into my research, I called my sister to “brainstorm.” I’ll do it again with my other sister when I’m a little farther into the rewrite. Then I have my two brainstorming/writer friends for when I’m really into the solid stages.

Now I have stripped the old storyboard of notes, added pictures, and feel I can craft this story  because I can now SEE these characters and Main Events. These are the exciting times, the creation of a whole new world.

About Terri Patrick
Writer of Romance and Memoir. Life is an adventure, take that journey.

9 Responses to A new story to craft

  1. Rose L. says:

    It all sounds so complicated to me! Best of luck!


  2. Trish says:

    I loe storyboards and have been using one for years. They’re helpful. At a glance you know exactly where you are in your story.


  3. Trish says:

    Uh, that second word is sposed to be love, not LOE!


  4. Trish says:

    And if you write multiple viewpoints, and use different colored Post-its, you know immediately whose perspective is next!


  5. Yep. Any blue variations are for the hero, pink for the heroine and purple was plot, yellow was story points, greens and oranges were subplots and more…
    I felt like I was in a time warp, it’s such and Old story, and Old process. Like – twelve years, a whole Jupiter cycle. 😀


  6. Jamie Brazil says:

    Want to get together and have a storyboard afternoon with wine and friends?


  7. Interesting: life (or a book) as a storyboard, with it’s many colours and pictures.


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