Saturday, October 13, 2007

Duh! What Was I Writing About?

Following are six tips that Lisa of Intrinsic Life Design has to give to writers who have started the creative ideation process and then suddenly ask, "Duh! What am I writing about?":

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1. Title your book. Go ahead, just make one up.
2. Write a headline. This should be a grabber, and a great place to start is to pose a question, the million dollar question.
3. Paragraph One: Answer the question. Provide a thumbnail of the plot through the eyes of your main characters, and their core conflicts. What are they up against? What's in their way?
4. Paragraph Two: Describe the outer world. Give us some context. Create the bigger world your characters live in--time, place, sensibility.
5. Write in the language and feel of your novel. Think of yourself as an actor trying on a costume. As a writer, your costume is the nature and feel of the language.
6. Write a closing sentence. This sentence can allude to the resolution of the book. Because this is an exercise and not the actual back cover copy, don't worry about giving away the store.

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2 comments:

Lisa Gates said...

John, so nice to meet you. You know, I find this exercise works for just about anything I'm writing. Short stories, nonfiction articles, etc. When I get stuck, I go back to the headline, or when I get really stuck, I do this exercise.

Thanks for including me in your witty pages.

John said...

Hi Lisa,

Thanks for visiting my page. Indeed, an honor. Do keep in touch.

j