Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Getting Ideas

I have roughly two weeks before my grammar books arrive, therefore I've decided to start thinking about my second book. Problem is - I have no idea what it should be about!

If I wait for inspiration to strike it may never be written, so I bought a notepad from Paperchase today (and a ton of differently coloured pens...yay!) and started to make notes. I know I have some ideas bubbling under the surface, I just need to start digging. I've begun by listing the things I've gone through and am familiar with (write what you know) and the themes and issues that I'm interested in (write what you want to know).

The plan is that, once I've come up with a decent list of themes to play with, I'll pick a few and then ask myself - what if? Perhaps I'll be able to link different themes through this question, or ideas will just form from these thoughts alone. Then I'll do some freewriting on each.

Hopefully out of the freewriting some characters, plots and premises will emerge. I'd like to start with short stories to get a feel for the story before committing to an entire novel on one idea.

This may come across as a little cold and calculated for such a creative process, and perhaps it is - but I'm just hoping that it will give my inspiration a little shove in the right direction! And who knows, once I start concentrating my thoughts on book two the ideas might start popping into my head on their own, so I'm making sure to keep my ideas pad with me at all times. I'm willing to write anything and everything down, even if it seems ridiculous...

How do you come up with ideas? Do they just come to you, fully formed, or do you have a process? Do you mainly get your inspiration from themes or characters?

Monday, February 16, 2009

Finito Baybee!

Well I've been off-line again, but for good reason - I finally completed the second draft of my novel today!

The last story was the hardest of all because I had to rewrite it from scratch, then edit the hell out of it, but it was worth the effort because I'm finally happy with it.

I've ordered a few punctuation and grammar books from Amazon for my technical edit - I'll format the entire manuscript into one document, print it out and go through each story several times, checking spelling, grammar, punctuation and any errors like repetitions, name confusion and so on. So I'll need to visit Easons for different coloured pens - cue stationery porn!

Then I'll post it off to an editorial consultancy...eek.