Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Still Outlining, Researching and Writing

I'm awfully sure that I'm done enough with my first chapter to move on to chapter two. I hesitate to write much more now, because my Grande Outline of the Novel(tm) remains unfinished; I've got notes for only about five of the 24 planned chapters, and even though I know the story in broad strokes, I don't want to get too much prose down on the page before I become even more familiar with it. Also, I'm getting deep into Writerly Research Mode(tm) which will pull me away from the writing for a while, though last time I managed to keep scribbling while doing some book larnin' and maybe that's how I'll work this time, too. Which means that my book-in-progress will become festooned with sticky notes and odd scraps of paper reminding me to change the bits about the farmer's hat or the cost of oats or whatever when my research turns up things I've written that are historically wrong.

But progress does continue, however slowly, on the outline. Yesterday I made some good notes about chapter 17 or something like, and I'm really pleased with the ideas for that bit. It gave me insight into the protagonist to see him down the road, as it were, interacting with some minor characters. The best way to learn who your characters are, you know, is to have them do things and interact with other people. Like little children they learn to walk and we sit back, their proud parents. Yes, even if they also learn to pick up guns and shoot people, we remain proud of them. It's the way of writing.

Anyway, I'm collecting characters and locations and scenes and themes still, and I continue to believe that "Cocke & Bull" is going to be a Really Amazing Book(tm).

WordCountMeter(tm): 2,606


  1. You have my Eternal Encouragement and Support (tm).

  2. Wonderful, Scott! I'm happy for your Manly Man Who Writes Progress(tm)


  3. That's great. Happy Thoughts And Smiles(tm).


  4. Hahaha. I love how your process is both organized and loose. It seems very organic. (I hate it when people use the word "organic" that way. D'oh.)

  5. You should also go about adding a (tm) after the title of your book, lest that too be plundered by literary pirates.

  6. Michelle: I'm happy, too! I just wish I had more time for more Manly Man Who Writes Progress(tm).

    Dominique: Thanks(tm)!

    Annie: Yeah, it's like I know exactly what I'm doing while having no idea what I'm doing. It's cool.

    Ben: I'm going to trademark every word of the book. That'll show them. That'll show them all!

  7. Okay, I just spent the last five minutes trying to get supporting evidence for why you should have a character named Davin in your book, but it's pretty unconvincing.

  8. Davin: Only five minutes? That's giving up pretty easily, don't you think?

  9. Yeehaw! for Progress(tm)!

    I like the idea of seeing how your character interacts with different people. You should have a random procession of characters interacting with the Protag.

  10. Okay, it was an hour and five minutes (TM), but I didn't want to admit to that.

    That's right, I TM'ed time.

  11. Davin: Actually, there's a character in Ch. 17 who needs a name. I don't know if you'd want him named after you.

    Although I note that your name is not "Davin(tm)" so if I trademark it first...