Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Don't forget the basics.

After the reception that yesterdays short story (Here if you didn't read it) I have been re-invigorated about my writing. My short stories (also on the site) seem to work really well, but when I go for longer works, they tend to fall apart, falling into seemingly inescapable plot holes. The one that I have finished, Staymaker, seems wrong somehow, maybe I'm thinking that because I really didn't  make a good job of selling it to agents, I still think the story works, but the marketing letters didn't - I got dispirited, and gave up on it. My Bad.
My problems are twofold, first, I am dyslexic to some extent, My proof reading skills are awful, I am too reliant on a spellchecker, and miss words that are words, but the wrong ones. (keen eyes will have spotted some errors in "Fall from Grace". So, I need a tame proofreader, plenty of people I know that I can coerce into that. 
The second reason is something more basic, more fundamental. I am impatient to start. I have the rough idea, and I just get on and write, ignoring the Basics - plotting, character lists, that sort of thing. That is my biggest failing in longer works, and the reason why I have (at the current count) four abandoned books, with various word counts, sitting on my Computer. Indeed, Staymaker only got to it's conclusion because it is a historical Novel, and as such loosely follows real events, so the plot is there, all I have to do is write the missing bits. Still difficult, but I had that framework to turn to when things went wrong.
Lesson to be learned here, I need to make that framework before I commit anything to paper. Instead of taking an Idea, and going BANG into chapter 1, I need to spend more time on building that framework, that timeline. develop that idea in note form, then flesh it out.
Sounds simple, sounds basic, Sounds like a plan 

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