Friday, January 17, 2014

The Writing Process

I have people ask me on a routine basis the same question: What is your writing process? My answer? Well, it changes. Most writers work through the writing process in a similar way, looking something like the following:

  1. Idea: Usually a spark of inspiration will hit 
  2. Building: The writer visualizes characters, their personalities, and the setting in which they reside   
  3. Plot: Putting the idea and the characters together to build a story     
  4. Actual Writing: Adding all the notes from the above steps into a written document that makes sense                      
  5. Revising: Going over your work to add, remove, or change elements to improve the plot, characters, or other elements 
  6. Editing: Fixing all those pesky typos, punctuation, grammar and format mistakes, as well as sifting through the paragraph and sentence structures looking for improper word choice or redundancies  
  7. Publishing: Getting that final, polished copy out there for the public to see   

What about me? Well... it's something like this...

Idea --> Writing --> Revising --> Idea --> Editing --> Writing --> Idea --> Writing --> Editing --> Revising --> Writing ---> Editing --> Publishing

But that's only if I'm happy with what I have! 

  • I don't walk around with a notebook in my pocket to jot down ideas as they come to me. 
  • I don't sit in front of my computer waiting for inspiration to hit me. 
  • I don't use any sort of methodical method that makes sense. 
  • I either have a formed idea or don't. Sometimes I'll have a whole story inside my head, I'll sit down to write it, and it's a miracle of creation. Other times I'll have a partial story, I'll write what I have, and later come back to it once the pieces fall into place. 
  • I often find myself doing other tasks while thinking about my writing, which is what works best for me. The everyday chores of the real world help me filter through my thoughts into something that becomes more rounded, and therefore, a better story.

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