Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pause NaNo--Outline

What am I reading now? Mystic and Rider (Sharon Shinn)
Annnd . . . what do I think of it so far? Fantasy, swords, magic and romance--I love this kind of book! (Ignore the Fabio-type cover; I promise it's a good book.)

The day before starting NaNoWriMo, I realized I only had one plot point for the outline of the story I wanted to write. Chapter 1: the main character dies. Yes--I'm new at this. But from what I heard at Death Camp (Dave Farland's) and ideas from other writer friends, I decided to stop writing for a little while and jot out an outline. Not full blown but enough to have ideas to spur some more writing.

Here's how the outline format I used came out (click here to download).

What I learned #1
Oh, I knew I needed to outline and kinda knew how plot points worked, but my epiphany came that I needed to plot all the character arcs for the main characters, then combine them together, weaving them through the story and trying to have peaks and valleys for each character in different chapters.

What I learned #2
The Rule of 3--
If you need to give an example in the story? Give three.
The characters have to decide where to go? There are three choices.
When a character is debating herself, she changes her mind three times.
(Thus the three dots on the outline page to remind me.)

Also, A Teaching Tip: A couple of posts ago I attached a page that listed reading skills and strategies that children learn as they begin reading. I'm putting a list of how to teach some of those items. Click here.

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