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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

2 scenes a day!

I'm not doing NANOWRIMO this year. I've tried it 3 times before and it's always been a great way for me to start a new story. But, I can't write like that - to a word count. Turns out, when I do that, I write crap. And end up deleting most of it. There might be a sentence or two that are worth keeping, turning over in my mind, and figuring out what to do with them. Those are what eventually become stories like Marina Melee and Chupacabra.

I need structure. I need to know where I'm going. I need a plan. Yes, I'm a plotter, not a pantster. Without my outline, I meaner and wander. I ramble. Just ask Matt.

Stephen King's strategy--write 2000 words per day--worked well for Marina Melee (but I'm not Stephen King, I just went for 1000 words per day) because I did have a very detailed, specific outline and knew exactly where the story was going. Naturally, I thought the same process would work for Chupacabra. The outline was there, I knew how it would end. I just didn't know how to get there. So, I came up with a different strategy--I'd only have to write 2 scenes per day. Semantics, you say. Probably. But in my mind, I have to know the point of each scene, know where it starts and where it ends, know how it moves the story forward before I can write it.

Turns out, 2 scenes is about 1000 words, more or less. Mentally, it works for me. Maybe it'll work for you, too.


  1. Oh, no! We'll miss you... But I understand. And congratulations on the new system--seems pretty good!

  2. So far, so good, Guilie! I finished rewriting the final chapters of Chupacabra this way and found I usually wrote more than 1000 wpd.If I didn't, I didn't feel like I'd left anything unfinished since I completed whole scenes, even if some were short.