Sunday, July 6, 2014

Thinking Ahead

I know that when you’re writing, a few sentences in a Word doc (or whatever you use to write in) don’t feel like a book. They have the potential to be a book, but at the moment they’re not. They are so far away from being a book in fact, that apart from occasionally planning your speech for when you win the Booker Prize, you really don’t think far beyond today’s goal, whatever it may be.

Finish this scene.
Finish this paragraph.
Finish this damn sentence.

So here’s tip for you. On the chance that those sentences do one day become an actual, proper book, do yourself a favour and start thinking now about the things you’re writing. About the process. About the research.

Think about your influences. Think about your inspiration. Think about the themes.

Got a funny anecdote about writing this particular thing? Like the time you found yourself outside in the middle of the night because you needed to research how leaves smelled? (I wish this was a random thing I’d invented for this post, but I’ve done it…) Write it down now.



Because when that Word doc is a book, people are going to ask you questions.

You’re going to need to talk about this book in a lot of places, and to a lot of people, and you don’t want to keep repeating the same things over and over again.

You’re going to be expected to provide content for blog tours.

This month, my pseudonym has to write eight different blog posts for eight different guest spots. My brain hurts already.

In August, it’s nine. But that’s for a co-written book, so really it’s only four and a half.

September, it’s five. Pfft. Five? I had eight ideas written down for that blog tour! For once I'm ahead of the game.

So, make notes now, even if it seems like you’ll never possibly need them. Because if that random paragraph in front of you one day grows into its own book, you’ll thank yourself later.


3 comments:

  1. Now you got me curious about Elijah and his nankeen trousers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All of that lovely research, and I never found away to mention the nankeen trousers!

      Delete
    2. His nankeen trousers flew across the room and landed on the back of a chair like a near-sighted albatross finding a strong perch in a rather stunted baobab tree.

      Delete

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