Happy Wednesday lovely readers. It has now come to the point where not having bad things happen equals having a good week. So I am in a really good mood, hurray for good weeks! It’s the lull between sending out the second batch of query letters and receiving responses. I’ve also got the first few paragraphs of my second book in my Seeker series written. I’ve got my beginning, which is usually an extremely difficult thing for me. Now I just need to keep the momentum going amidst everything else I have going on and I’ll have this puppy finished in no time.
Since I am starting a new book, I thought this might be a good time to talk about my process for when I write a book. Give you a glimpse of how the sausage is made, so to speak. Granted, this book is a little different from the last two books (or novel and novella) that I wrote because this book is a sequel. That means I won’t have to create my main characters and some of my world building has been done already. However, the rest of the process is pretty congruent with what I did for my other two manuscripts. If you’d like some help with creating characters you can read my recent Resource for Authors post on just that topic by clicking HERE.
So when I write a book, generally I choose my main character first. This isn’t the only way to do things, it’s just the way I happen to do them. My characters really seem to drive my writing so I like to choose them first. Since I already have the main characters for my Seeker series, I move on to the next thing. Setting, which may seem odd to you because usually plot comes next. But in the world I’ve created for my Seeker Series, setting is important enough that I already have the places picked out for each of the books in my series. It all ties in with my main characters. Most books aren’t like this so I thought it would be helpful to point out why I’m doing it this way.
Now the setting for my second book will be a metropolis called Dvorets. This metropolis is mostly rolling plains with giant palaces/mansions/castles everywhere. It is a very opulent place. So I want to do a little web surfing for inspiration. I’m such a visual person, I like to find pictures to inspire me when I write. Having those pictures also helps me write more realistically and with more detail. Two important aspects of writing. If you follow me on social media, you may have noticed that I put out a call for help with this. I’m on Pinterest and I started a board for my book. If you’re on Pinterest you can feel free to look me up and help me out in my search for palaces and castles. You can also check out my board entitled “Treasure Seeker” and you can see what I’ve posted already. Feel free to point me towards some other ideas as well while you’re there. 🙂 It also has some notes I made for myself so you can check those out too if you’d like.
So then, after I’ve done the fun scouring of the internet looking for visual inspiration, I will move on to my plot. For this I have to keep my characters in mind. For my second book, I will be focusing on my character Thisavros. He has the ability to find things, thus the name of my book being Treasure Seeker. I am a bit more restricted in my plotting since I have a character that already exists from my first book but I don’t mind, I like a challenge. I need to figure out what major obstacle my protagonist will have to overcome and how his abilities and limitations will affect his journey (aka my plot). I also like symmetry in my writing, so my antagonist will likely be somewhat of an opposite to Thisavros. A sour to his sweet, a yin to his yang, you get the picture.
Then once I have a general idea of my plot course, I can set out on my journey. I can write the failures and triumphs, the steady rhythm and the whiplash starts and stops, the predictable story progression and the unexpected twists and turns. It’s where the magic happens, I hope. Some people write start to finish, some people write out of order. The only right way to do it, is the way that works best for you. I try to write start to finish but it usually turns into out of order. If I get stuck at a certain point I will bounce around. Or if I get a bolt of inspiration I will stop wherever I’m at in my story to write down the scene before I forget it. Those are great moments and they’re usually my favorite scenes. (In Seeker Initiative, when you finally get the opportunity to read it, look for the marketplace scene and the fire scene. Those are examples of bolts of inspiration.)
My first Seeker book was written completely out of order. I didn’t even try to go start to finish. I just wrote scenes and then went back and tied them together. I labeled my chapters, “Chapter B” and “Chapter M” and “Chapter W” based on where (generally) in the story they would go. Like if I knew something had to go near the end of the book then I would give it a letter later in the alphabet and vice versa. I’m not sure if this book will go the same way. I wrote The Maladroit start to finish so it’s really anyone’s guess how this book will happen.
And as I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I do have my beginning written. This is just a quirk of mine. Story beginnings are so important that I usually get caught up on them. For some reason, I can’t write anything else for my story until I have the beginning written. This by no means, means that I won’t change the beginning at least a dozen times throughout the course of writing this book. I’m sure I will be changing it up until publication (like I’ve been doing with Seeker Initiative). But there’s something so freeing about having it there now. It makes me feel lighter knowing it’s there. To me it feels like a prerequisite to working on the rest of my book, like I can’t even thing about anything else until it’s done. So now that I have that out of the way, look out world!
Though I may write out of order, that’s no excuse to write a sloppy story. By that I mean having your plot feel disjointed and out of order. I like to keep track of things in my handy-dandy Seekerverse binder. I will definitely be doing that again for this book. It takes some extra work but it has proven to be extremely useful thus far. It helps me stay organized and consistent, which can be hard enough to do throughout one book, let alone throughout a whole series. For those of you interested in what goes in my binder, I will be doing a post about staying organized on Monday so tune in for that!
That pretty much sums up my process when I begin a new book. If you have any questions for me, please jot them down in the comments section. If you’re enjoying my blog, I hope you will share the love (and my blog) by utilizing those little social media buttons below. Otherwise I bid you farewell and I hope you have a wonderful week.
Until we meet again.