Organizing Everything I Wrote

Gearing up for some serious drafting in 2023.

Here is a video update where I’m drawing another setting for my novel! It is a type of work room.

In my last update, I had just finished my third pass through my new outline in the form of Q&A about each plot point, adding in the world building element or character motivation that was missing.

By this point, I’d got a ton of material in the Q&A. Before going back to the start for another pass, I needed to do was decide what I was going to do next. There are always more questions to answer, so I could have done more of that.

Instead, I decided to organize all the material first, because it was getting unwieldy. There’s no point creating a giant document that’s super hard to read, since I’m trying to create something that will help me in the drafting process.

As soon as I’m sufficiently clear on the story and have enough of the details, I intend to build out the next draft, under each scene heading, by either pasting in pieces of the existing draft, rewriting a scene, or more likely, writing a missing scene for the first time.

Writing from an outline will be interesting, since I’m not much of a “plotter,” if you buy the plotter/pantser dichotomy. (I think it’s more of a spectrum.) But you can’t “pants” a second draft, so it’s important to be able to write from an outline.

Anyway, I spent the last day of my InkPrepNoWriCember challenge organizing all of my notes. Here’s how:

  • I highlighted answers that needed to be their own scene. Maybe because I needed it to set up a conflict that would come up later, or introduce new information.
  • Some elements needed to be introduced, but didn’t need a full scene. I could squish them into an existing scene, so I highlighted this answers and labeled them ‘breadcrumbs.’
  • The next thing I will need to do is pull those out into a separate list, soo that I have a complete list of all the scenes, including the ones I’ve added now, and the ones I already had.
  • After that, I can decide on their order. In some cases, the order is clear, and in other cases, I have leeway to decide which order makes the narration the most interesting.

The story is inching toward clarity! I’m nearly ready to start drafting in earnest, and I think that’s really good progress for a month of work.

Here is the workroom I drew! I think the end result ended up cozy and atmospheric.

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