Episode 16 Plotting Vs Pantsing

Kahle: [00:00:00] Welcome.  To loose leaf, a multi-author writing journal, where we talk goals, the ups and downs of writing and where we try to warn you off our greatest pitfalls. We'll keep it short because you don't have much time and we'd rather be writing. 

Hillary: [00:00:29] I'm Hillary and 

Charity: [00:00:31] I'm charity. It's been a crazy busy week and it's terrible.

Tell us about the mini conference that you just, I 

Hillary: [00:00:39] just finished, uh, helping put on a mini conference, the smile writers conference. Um, I call it my writer's con because con is cooler than conference, but I haven't quite gotten everybody to pick that up with me. I'm trying God, it's better. Right. It's much better to writers con.

So anyway, we just had this, my writer's con and, um, it went really well. It was amazing. We had great turnout. We got, uh, it typically is really small. So when it's in-person we usually have, we haven't even made it up to a hundred attendees, so it's pretty small. But it's awesome. It's we have amazing people come and teach, and then you're in these really close groups where you get to really communicate with the instructors.

And it's really fantastic. I love it. But, um, being online, we opened it up and boy, did they come? I mean, I know bigger ones, but we had, we made it, um, as we were finishing up, I think we made it just over the 500 Mark of attendees. That's excellent. Yeah. And that's, um, That's why she's so tired. I'm exhausted.

I'm just exhausted. We had lots of questions. There were lots of little tech fails on my part, I think. But, um, our email system didn't want to, it didn't like handling that many people. It wasn't used to it. So I think we ended up in a lot of people's spam filters, which means a lot of people didn't have the passwords or the information or the things they needed to.

Really access it, but it worked out. We didn't, I guess when I say a lot, we probably had maybe half a dozen people asking about it, so it wasn't that bad. And we ha I had a static page on the website, so they could go on there and check things out and get the information in that. It just. It went super smoothly.

We had several live events. We had an open putting, we had a couple of panels. I think you forget when you're not there, how good it is to be at a conference like that. And to really hear other people who have done it, who, um, have had success who know what they're doing, because they just, they they're still willing to share two authors are amazing people.

They are. They're great. And so, yeah, they. They were sharing information. We have these little mingles and you got to have these little personal conversations with other authors in the all. Well, actually I was going to say in the area, but they're from all over. We had people from Japan and from Australia and from Austria and Germany and all over.

So it was pretty 

Charity: [00:03:02] cool. I missed it this year. I really missed. Getting to see. Cause like you 

Hillary: [00:03:07] said until October 31st, so I can 

Charity: [00:03:10] go and still listen, I still can. Okay. Well we may have to put a Lincoln and say, 

everyone: [00:03:16] make sure you don't get any rest, 

Charity: [00:03:18] but I know this particular conference in person, I know how wonderful it is because it's one of those where you get there and you feel like these are my people because they get.

That you have voices in your head and it's actually okay. 

Hillary: [00:03:33] Because they do too. That is so true. Yeah. There's just something about being around other authors like that, where you just it's so easy to forget. Um, when you're in your day to day working hard, trying to get the family, writing the other jobs.

It's just easy to forget what it's like to be around people who know what you're thinking about. And. I don't know. And you 

Charity: [00:03:56] don't have to explain it yeah. Or justify it? Yes. Okay. How did your week go? I, we haven't had you here for a couple of weeks. We 

Hillary: [00:04:05] missed you.

everyone: [00:04:10] I missed you guys. I 

Hillary: [00:04:12] don't remember saying it was going on and be like maybe once a 

everyone: [00:04:14] month or so, but we should try and have you more often I'll show up. That'd be 

Kahle: [00:04:21] great. Oh, well the week was. Pretty long just working guys. Yeah. 

Charity: [00:04:27] Yeah. One of the things we thought we might talk about today 

Hillary: [00:04:31] is plotting. Wait, you didn't tell us about your week.

Charity: [00:04:36] because my week was boring. I didn't go to work. Uh, the, the part that was exciting for my week will come at the reporting part, the let's report. Okay. Let's report then. 

everyone: [00:04:47] Did it

Charity: [00:04:51] okay, well look, you're going to make me so Michael, last week, I don't know if you heard it. Kale was, I had to finish. It's the same goal ahead. When, when you met with us last time, I had to finish my Christmas story. And I did this morning, so to go to take an extra week or two to actually get it done. But so this week I worked hard on finishing vows story and, uh, I don't hate it.

So that's a bonus. 

everyone: [00:05:19] That's a good bonus, 

Hillary: [00:05:21] especially when we know where your heart is not into it. Yes. 

Charity: [00:05:25] Well, as soon as I finished it, I might have opened my Saifai project. I was telling Hillary, uh, before you got here, kale that I got a headache, trying to do the math from here's how old she is at the beginning.

Here's how many months go by on this planet? Here's the space travel time. Here's the next planet. And then trying to get my timeline straight with the two characters who were. 

Hillary: [00:05:48] That's intense. Honestly, those things are live, but I 

Charity: [00:05:51] read details as hard and somebody will call me on it 

Hillary: [00:05:55] if I don't figure it out.

And they say, it's not hard to be an author. Right. 

Charity: [00:05:59] And that part won't even be in the book, but you have to know, but yeah, you have to know. So, so I know kale, your goal last time was you had to find out who red grape was. 

Kahle: [00:06:10] Yes. So I had to, I failed on one of my goals. I have not 

Hillary: [00:06:14] finished my degree failure.

everyone: [00:06:16] Yes when we learn from it. 

Kahle: [00:06:18] But yes, the Anna Catherine, uh, red grave, this is the one thing that I did succeed on because it was creative. Um, I'm going to pull it up. So I don't misquote myself. 

Hillary: [00:06:33] You had another goal that's less creative that you were trying to 

Kahle: [00:06:36] do. Just finishing my radio recording for my, my other side gig.

Um, I'm working Saturdays at my full-time job right now, in addition to the normal week. And so time has been slim, 

Hillary: [00:06:53] but while we're glad to have you, thank you. 

Kahle: [00:06:57] The idea that you guys left me with was figuring out how she fits into the world. So I came up with a bunch of different things that she could be in the world to be important in the story.

And I had. I have wanted to include a faction in this world really? That, uh, they're they're half elves, so they're human and otherwise, um, half-breeds with ELPs long, long lore dump. Short is that people don't like half elves. 

Charity: [00:07:32] Okay. You really don't like half anything. Do they have to be in a point of contention?

Kahle: [00:07:37] Yeah, there was some betrayal in the past. And so some have fells live that they don't look Elvish enough and they can get by living in society. Diana, Catherine. Was discovered living a normal life in society. 

Hillary: [00:07:56] And then, 

Kahle: [00:07:58] so she is going to be involved with the whole half elf faction in the storyline and it gives her, I've got some pretty, like, difficult reasons for her to be involved with the group.

I can go into there. They're cool. I like them. And so

we can tell, talk about it later. Um, yeah. Thank you guys very much. They're Stanek. That's right. 

Charity: [00:08:30] Grief. That's so cool. I'm so glad you know who she is. 

Kahle: [00:08:34] And the red grave comes from, uh, the, the people thought that they killed her and she left. So she found the grave that they had done for her. 

Hillary: [00:08:47] Oh my gosh.


everyone: [00:08:50] that's creepy. 

Kahle: [00:08:53] She might've put some of them 

everyone: [00:08:54] in there.


Charity: [00:09:06] going to take over your whole story. Cause 

everyone: [00:09:08] she's awesome. 

Hillary: [00:09:09] She's going to have a spinoff. You'll have to write her story another 

everyone: [00:09:12] time, but never long moment.

Charity: [00:09:20] Right. And the more he talks about it, the more I love her. 

Hillary: [00:09:24] So thanks 

Kahle: [00:09:25] guys. Thank you very much for that 

Hillary: [00:09:27] push. No, welcome anytime. 

everyone: [00:09:31] That's what we're here for, right. 

Hillary: [00:09:33] Okay. So my goal last week was to block, um, my cozy mystery that I have to have written. By the end of October. And I started it. I did have a super busy week with the conference, so that was just insane.

But there were, my husband was also gone. So I could say it as a leader, it was kind of nice. It sounds like he's my parent. Now it just works out that way. You know that, um, I did get it partly blocked. I started, I started figuring out the pieces of the mystery, how it all cause cozy. I knew the cozy mystery mystery world.

And so I kind of was going through several different beat sheet kind of things, trying to figure out, okay, where are these pieces supposed to come? What am I supposed to be doing in here? And there's actually an often referred to 12 chapter breakdown of, uh, I don't know if it's a mystery or a cozy mystery.

I think it's a cozy, uh don't know, there's, there's a classic 12 chapter mystery. Break down basically. Yeah, it's super awesome. And since mine is in six parts, I'm like, yes, two parts per day, per thing, two tempers were parked. I don't think it's going to necessarily work out that way. Um, there's some pieces that fit better together, you know, that kind of thing.

And some that are just going to take up a lot more space. So it'll work though. I'm really excited. I did start figuring out some of the things that were going on and blocking out. I thought through the beginning of it blocked. Uh, so I'm hoping to get that finished. Um, I'm excited. I actually, I think there's been more time on my future cozy mystery ideas because they're pretty awesome.

everyone: [00:11:10] easily. 

Hillary: [00:11:11] So yeah, that's where I am. Sorry. I. Got it heart way. Yeah. I don't want to say I didn't do anything because I really tried to do something, but Hey, we're embracing failure today. 

Charity: [00:11:25] Last week we decided that sometimes choosing not to finish our goal is it is a choice 

Hillary: [00:11:30] for the better, 

Charity: [00:11:31] and there's nothing wrong with that.

Hillary: [00:11:35] I chose to be saying this week. 

Charity: [00:11:38] Well, it's kind of funny that. That you were, um, talking about the list, the 12 part lists you, you found because one of the things we wanted to talk about today was. Pantsing plotting, where do we fall? And what does that mean? And, and maybe hit some points because with October coming up, they're going to start their plotting for November, which is national novel writing month NaNoWriMo memo.

And, uh, I know I've done it several times and the times that I was the most successful, I put some thought in it beforehand. Instead of just showing up on November 1st and going, okay, now I'm going to write 50,000 words on a new novel. Um, that usually doesn't work well for me. And a little bit of planning comes, comes beforehand.

I love when we texting each other, kale asked a question, he was like, what do you mean by plotty? And, and we were tossing some things around. And my favorite quote was when you said. Uh, pantser half pantser

Hillary: [00:12:40] was like, I'm an over-thinker. 

Charity: [00:12:44] So funny, because I think we're all different. 

Hillary: [00:12:46] And I was like, I'm kind of more of a pair of capris. And then right now I'm mostly at the answer.

Charity: [00:12:55] So why did you define what a pantser is for people who may not have 

Hillary: [00:13:00] heard that term? So they typically split them. Pantsers are plotters and pantsers are the ones who sit down and write by the seat of their pants. Just. Through the story, don't have a clue what's happening and just let the words, tell them, 

Kahle: [00:13:12] I feel like being.

Being a pantser is more like, tell it like collaborative storytelling with 

Hillary: [00:13:19] yourself. Yeah. Yes. I like that. Or the voices in your head. 

everyone: [00:13:25] I've also, 

Charity: [00:13:27] I've also heard it described 

Hillary: [00:13:28] as your 

Charity: [00:13:28] discovery writer, because maybe you were a reader first and you're discovering the story as you go. 

Hillary: [00:13:34] Nice. Yeah, I really do. I feel like I'm somewhere in between, honestly, because.

I, uh, we're all shorts. 

everyone: [00:13:41] We're all 

Hillary: [00:13:42] shorts. I have to have S I have to have a point. Point B I have to be able to somewhere that I'm going otherwise I've gotten nothing. Um, I can write in circles for days if I don't have anywhere that I'm going. So yeah. I have to have a point B where I'm headed because otherwise I just, I never get there.

I, so I'll go through and figure out what my end goal is. And usually that's pretty simple. Usually, you know, the end is they succeed. Yeah. At least for most people, some people it's not, but I like mine tied up in a nice, pretty boat. Yes. And so it's just the points in between there. And if there are any, if there's anything that I know about the sorority, I try to plug it in where I think it belongs.

And then, then I'm able to at least say, okay, they have to get together soon. Something like that. So what, 

Charity: [00:14:29] what does your method look like? Kale? Oh, man. 

Kahle: [00:14:32] Um, I'm still figuring out what my method is. 

Hillary: [00:14:36] Okay. The cool part. He brought in his note journal and he started opening it. And I just want to read that right.

It's really awesome. It's full of artwork and all of his ideas and it's pretty cool. So he may still be learning, but he has a lot happening. 

Kahle: [00:14:54] I have plot points written on sticky notes in this book 

Hillary: [00:15:01] on scrap 

Kahle: [00:15:03] paper on. I have notes on my phone. I have, uh, 

Hillary: [00:15:11] they're just called book thoughts that I will probably never go back into when I actually am looking for those thoughts.

Yeah. But it's like, it's so long every time I'm sitting at her randomly, and I have 

everyone: [00:15:21] a book that I just put it in there and I'm like, okay, this, 

Kahle: [00:15:24] I had an idea. Uh, at work one time and there was a pizza box at work for some reason. And so I wrote out all my ideas on the pizza box and took a picture of it.

So that's another plot thing. And I've got that on my phone. It's just everywhere. Like I know the beginning and I have an idea of what the end of my story is going to look like. I, I think about characters rather than events and dialogue scares the. Pants 

Hillary: [00:15:56] off of me. Do I feel like when I get stuck, I just write dialogue that's my, my pet is often.

If I, if I don't know what's happening, just like dialogue, dialogue, talk my way through the story. 

Kahle: [00:16:09] I, I can't though, man. My dialogue is just 

Hillary: [00:16:13] hot, garbage, you know, I heard somebody say though, it was in like an effective writing class or something. And this is where I started thinking about that, where I like, Oh, I just, I write dialogue with that happens to me, but she writes it, their internal thoughts.

She's like trying to get into someone's head or get through something she goes in and she'll just like, let their like mind straight and kind of just happen from that character. Yeah. It just helps you move through and then you eventually hit upon something that you actually know.

Yeah. So that's, that's not unusual just so you know, 

Charity: [00:16:43] and it actually could lead you places that you. I would be surprised because I know a couple of times I've tried tons of different ways to, and one of them is I call it list-making, but it's kind of more like that stream of consciousness from a character's point of view.

And it's me asking questions and then getting in their head and trying to figure out how they would answer it. And the other thing I've always heard is you should never do the first thing that comes to mind. So if you're doing that and can get in and just do a stream of consciousness, you will find.

Two or three levels deeper of what they're thinking and why they're thinking that and where you can go. So it's a great exercise to do it 

Hillary: [00:17:20] that way. It's cool. I'm going to have to do that sometime. Yeah. 

Charity: [00:17:22] Yeah. And it's not stress cause you know, you're not, it's not what people are gonna read, so it takes that stress off of you and you can figure stuff, figure things out.

So that's cool. 

everyone: [00:17:33] Thank you. Cool.

Charity: [00:17:40] well, I guess it just kind of brings me to, I'm just going to touch on a couple of different ways that people can look into and see if it'll work for them. We've talked about, you know, just sitting down and. Going with the flow and whatever happens, happens. And then you fix it all in revisions because that's what revisions are for.

Um, and then there are different ways to plot. I mean, if you go back to, I'm just assuming they still do this at school down where you had to sit and you had to outline your papers and turn in your outline. Shoot. 

Hillary: [00:18:07] I don't know if they do, do they.

I'm trying to think of the stuff my kids have brought home from school and I'd never see anything like that. I 

Charity: [00:18:17] don't know if my kids in college have had to do that, but I mean, we used to have to outline our paper and turn in the outline for the paper before you even wrote the paper. So that's one way you could do it.

So maybe I should add a link for what 


everyone: [00:18:30] looks like. Oh yeah. Yeah. 

Kahle: [00:18:33] I've had to, not every, not every course required it, but. Um, I 

Charity: [00:18:38] also, I'm not that old yet. That 

everyone: [00:18:40] okay, good. So 

Kahle: [00:18:44] outlining, outlining with like, 

Charity: [00:18:47] yeah, like, like chapter one title goal, and then yeah, the number one and then ABC and number two, ABC.

And then. Chapter two, you know, you're 

Hillary: [00:18:58] finding a good beat sheet really helps me do that. Cause that helps lead me through the story. Anyway, it's like, okay, this is where it's supposed to be getting exciting. And I'm like, Oh, okay, well then this should happen. That'll be exciting to see. And 

Charity: [00:19:09] I found it all these beat sheets, cause that's a great way of doing it.

And I look at them and I kind of go, okay. But then I don't know how to know how to plug in my numbers to see 

Hillary: [00:19:18] if I'm falling in the right place. I found a cool thing. There's Excel spreadsheets out there. Um, they're just spreadsheets.

It does well, and it already has all the formulas and everything in it. It's um, I'm trying to think where the place was. I think Jamie gold, she does meet romance. Yeah, she does romance beat sheets. You also have some regular ones. For other genres, but I obviously just go looking for her Romans one. So that's what I'm aware of.

Yeah, but she has in there the beat sheet as well as, um, I can't remember what it's called, but it's basically a word tracker and it has in there, it has the different act and it has, what's supposed to be happening in those acts. It has the, you plugged in how big you think you want your novel to be? It was really good when I was trying to make my next novel a little bigger.

I'm like, okay. So if I'm shooting for 60,000 words instead of 45, How many, how far do I have to go in this? And so then it was like, okay, you're good. You're approximately at this chapter and wash it, doesn't say chapters, but these P this page is what it is. They'd have pages and then word counts that you're supposed to be hitting during those things.

Yeah. And obviously that's totally flexible, but you at least have an idea yeah. Where you're headed with it. I know that I have 17,500 words to get this part of the story accomplished. Yeah. And I know that typically how long my chapters are. And so that's approximately three to four or whatever, two or three depends a little Mayer, but that's awesome.

Charity: [00:20:48] And I know, like in the beat sheet they had the thing with, you mentioned, um, the opening scene, the inciting incident act one. Uh, the mid point reversals and all of those, I guess it's just as long as you have. 

Hillary: [00:21:02] I know, I 

Charity: [00:21:03] know. Well, I haven't written down is optional surprise twist that sends the story sideways.

Hillary: [00:21:10] What kind of 

Charity: [00:21:10] beachy does this? This is from Janice Hardy. Um, she's got, it's called parts as parts, and I just kind of. Condense a little bit, but that's funny. She describes what those things actually mean because 

Hillary: [00:21:22] it is, it geared toward a specific genre. 

Charity: [00:21:24] I don't believe this one is just because it's just kind of fiction in general because I mean, I look at it and I go act one crisis.

Okay. You can figure that out without having someone define it, but midpoint reversal. And you're like, I don't know what that is. I don't know if I did it, but she defined. 

Hillary: [00:21:41] Oh, good. Oh wait. We already know 

everyone: [00:21:47] you don't have to listen to me. 

Charity: [00:21:51] But it's, it's just, it's, it's fun to see that. So that was cool. 

Hillary: [00:21:55] So helpful too.

Well, and then you can think about it when you see that kind of stuff coming through. You're like, Oh wait, do I do that? When maybe that's something that would have added to my story. Maybe that's something that will help improve my writing. Just having that kind of there. Yeah. Yeah. I write in Scrivener.

So typically you find a beat sheet that I, like, I usually take the information and plug it into Scrivener so I can have it right there too. I'll put it in the description of a chapter or the heading kind of a thing or something like that. So 

Charity: [00:22:21] I can, yeah, sometime Jamie gold spreadsheets, you could load straight into 

Hillary: [00:22:25] Scribner.

She does have tried and I never got a torque, but I know I'll look it up and figure out how I know how you have to save you, save it as a template, but then that template has to be in a specific file so that when you go and import it. Um, you can actually find it because I saved it does with my stories and I'm like, I can't get to it because it's not a story.

It's a template to get to know. This is old lady writers.

Kahle: [00:22:55] I have struggled with Scrivener for like, Like, Oh, it's so difficult for me. Yeah. I get how it works, but man, it 

Charity: [00:23:04] just 

Hillary: [00:23:04] doesn't work for you. It may be something that, um, I didn't really understand how to use it either until I sat down with Tamara and she showed me how she used it and I was like, Oh, that makes sense.

So if you ever want to sit down, we can 

Kahle: [00:23:15] share it. He's helped me with it before.

Hillary: [00:23:21] Yeah. I was talking with the writer and one of the mingles today, or she was like, she doesn't even separate her chapters until she's done. She just starts in there and just writes all the way down, like just scenes, because that would, she writes 

Charity: [00:23:33] by scenes. Cause I, cause yeah, cause I have to have my scenes, but I'll move my scenes around.

Hillary: [00:23:39] Okay. 

everyone: [00:23:39] So I have to separate scenes or I'd go nuts. 

Kahle: [00:23:44] Cool. I'm learning so much today. You guys, 

Charity: [00:23:47] can I overload you with one more? 

Hillary: [00:23:50] There was one, it's a sponsoree kind of thing. It's not our sponsor, but 

everyone: [00:23:56] we're not sponsoring

Hillary: [00:24:01] but we had plotter reach out to us. And so I got to watch their video in the thing and they are really cool. It's a very visual thing. Cause they have like these streams going across and you like just place incidents on the timeline. Oh, yeah, it's super cool. It's all 

everyone: [00:24:14] color coded and so pretty. 

Hillary: [00:24:17] Um, it's very cool.

So that's cool. Yeah. I, you should watch the video. I have it. That's good. I know. 

Charity: [00:24:25] Maybe we'll get sponsored. 

everyone: [00:24:29] Well, I was gonna say 

Charity: [00:24:29] another technique. Have you heard of the snowflake method? 

Hillary: [00:24:33] I have. I've never figured out what it is though. Cause I don't look into things very well. 

Charity: [00:24:36] So the snowflake method.

Start with one sentence and that sums up your whole story, and then next you start branching off. So, so then maybe from that sentence, you go to a paragraph and then from that, and you just keep it, you have to get

Hillary: [00:24:51] wedding tags. It's almost that you start with just an idea. Okay. This is what's cool about my story.

Now, how do I 

Charity: [00:24:57] make that happen? And then you just build step at a time until you get to where you feel like stopping kale looks 

everyone: [00:25:03] like his mind is going to explode.

Kahle: [00:25:09] That's intent. You have to be able to condense your story. So small. Into like the prime thing that you want to do with the story 

Hillary: [00:25:20] that those are so important, especially because one, okay. Stakes are my problem. I write romance. And so there, it's hard to have really big stakes in there, but all like when you talk through a blurb or through a tagline, You generally like, make it exciting, you know, like this is what's big and cool.

And, um, yeah, exactly. Well, and then, you know that it's going to be, you're going to have some stakes already built in because in order for that tagline or whatever, to be interesting, you're that base idea you ha you have to work in. Okay. Well, why is this scary for that person? 

Charity: [00:25:58] I have an example of that one line tagline.

The first young adult Booker road fade into me started. Because I was researching the snowflake method and this was as close as I got, I came up with the one line and then I started to write the book and that particular book actually wrote from the end. And I plotted it backwards cause I, I was like, I need to figure it out.

But I was like, I knew I wanted to end here. And I was like, well, how'd they get there? And I'd go back a step. Well, how'd they get there and I'd go back a step. But anyway, long story short, it was crazy. You know, how much trouble that book gave me. Um, but the one line that I can came up with was aliens live among us, their purpose to protect and nurture their greatest mistake, mankind.

Hillary: [00:26:42] That's so cool. 

Charity: [00:26:43] And, and the, the story, I don't know how well that comes out, but that was the, the, 

Hillary: [00:26:47] that. The 

Charity: [00:26:49] kernel of the idea and it grew from there. But then I couldn't 

everyone: [00:26:53] complete the snowflake method. I was like, I need to write this 

Charity: [00:26:56] scene and this scene and I, 

Hillary: [00:26:58] it was crazy, but wow. Yeah, snowflake would be hard.

I feel like I would need an entire room full of streams. And I looked like I was in cards. I looked like a stocker or that I was investigating a murder or something like that. 

Charity: [00:27:12] So, so it's okay. Kale that you haven't found your method and it's okay. If every story you write uses a different method, as you're 

Hillary: [00:27:18] finding what you 

Charity: [00:27:19] like.

And sometimes different stories, I think require different things. Like I know Hillary mentioned, she found this great list of 12 steps that needed to be in a mystery. I have one that is 

Hillary: [00:27:31] there. I'm like, this sounds very familiar, Jerry

everyone: [00:27:39] We talked about that today already. I think 

Charity: [00:27:42] you did. And I wouldn't say I found a 12 step list for romance because cool. Things are very formulaic. And even though it kind of rubs me wrong to follow the rules, you know, sometimes you follow the rules and so maybe there's a. You know, you study the hero's journey, then you know what steps have got to come in in that fantasy story?

Hillary: [00:28:03] The interesting thing I find about that is we, I don't think it's bad to start with that bone structure of 12 steps or whatever, because then you, do you know where you're going? I find that I write through something at granted. I'm still at the beginning of my own author journey. So I'll, I'll write through something and have to go back and then be like, okay, well that's.

All right. And again, and it gets, it gets it's better though, because like, you know where that structure is supposed to be. And it's like, once you've finished that piece where you're, you've got your basic bones in place, then you can kind of start to work with it and really mold it into something that's great.

And sometimes those pieces move around a little, but that helps you to maintain the process of the arc of the story that way. And then your, all of your fun stuff can move around within it. So I don't think it's bad. I know it is. It does kind of hurt just to say it's formula, just because you have to actually say those words.

Nobody wants that 

Charity: [00:28:59] because we wouldn't be unique and individual 

Kahle: [00:29:02] subject my creativity to a mask.

everyone: [00:29:11] So, 

Kahle: [00:29:12] okay. Ultimately freeing 

Hillary: [00:29:15] because then you actually can be

Charity: [00:29:23] Exactly. Well, that's a great lead into what goals do we want to set for 

Hillary: [00:29:29] next week? Next week? 

Charity: [00:29:32] Who wants to start? Well, mine will be simple because since I finished, yay, I'm going to let it sit while beta readers have it. And I'm just going to have fun this week and write on science fiction stuff. There's no end goal.

I just want to enjoy writing because I know I'll have to get into revisions here in another week. 

everyone: [00:29:53] Nice. Well, 

Kahle: [00:29:55] I am going to fund. A plotting system. I'm going to look at your recommendations, try one of them out and see how it goes. So, 

Charity: [00:30:05] yeah, and I would suggest with that, if you're traditionally a discovery writer, don't lock yourself into tight because I think that's part of why I had such a hard time writing fade into me because I locked myself in so tight with all my planning.

I didn't enjoy it. So be willing to give yourself some. Hmm, room to move and break rules and explore too. If that's where your 

Hillary: [00:30:31] mindset really is. Well, and on that point, I mean, a lot of the time when we, I know you've kind of do the same, you talked about asking yourself questions. Although there in my plotting often consists of like one sentence.

Like they go to the mall and something bad happens, 

everyone: [00:30:47] things like 

Hillary: [00:30:48] that. So it's like just basics getting me that first push and being like, okay, this could happen to get me to the next spot. Okay. That could happen. You know, it's just like little pieces to be like, okay, we're still moving. We're going to eventually get there.

And then you have a ton of freedom when you go back through to really work with that. I'm like, okay. So I just have to get them to the mall. How can I make that interesting. Yeah. So, 

Charity: [00:31:10] but then you may find that you need lots of structure to really fresher it's it's different 

Hillary: [00:31:16] for everybody. So good luck this week.

Cause I hope we're excited to hear what you like and me and present you with 

Kahle: [00:31:22] something so 

everyone: [00:31:25] perfect. 

Hillary: [00:31:27] Okay. So my goals this week are going to be, um, probably finishing through that cozy mystery. And I'm also revising. So that's a big one for me. I really want to get a ghost of bluff revised quickly because.

It's already out there. Like I said, I'm never doing that to me.

um, I actually have writing my, all of my, the books in my head right now. Not all of them, some of the books in my head, I have them all mapped out to where I'm like, okay. So if I actually want to publish this at this time, I have to finish it by. X date. So I need to start writing surprisingly, even with booking these out, through like the middle of next year, I still have to be writing quite a lot already, but yes, I'm working on that.

So yeah, working on those, I'm going to plot my cozy and I am going to, what else did I say? Revise, Jaya. Ghost of love. That's all I'm saying right now. Every other goal is in my head for a week. 

everyone: [00:32:37] Oh. I promised last 

Charity: [00:32:40] week, I don't try to

last week kind of come full, come full circle, maybe sort of, I don't know where we started, but, um, I think that's part of the beauty of NaNoWriMo is, you know, they have it so that you have to right. It's just 1,675 words a day, a day. And to help you get in that, that habit of getting your word 

Hillary: [00:33:12] counts in we're talking nano today, or any of us going to do nano, or are we going to do this together?

Or I don't know. And I'm like, are really doing 

Charity: [00:33:20] that now. I say it every year and I usually do it for the first week. And then my family's like, I hate it when you do nano. So I stop, uh, I'm just bringing it up. I have a 

Hillary: [00:33:33] post that says I'm not doing nano and I'm okay with that. 

Charity: [00:33:38] And I'm not specifically planning on it and I do nano different anyway, cause I just, I guess that's my rebellious streak.

I don't always start new. Like if I did it, it would be 50,000 words on. On a refugee and rebel Prince to finish those two, because if I had about 50,000 words, both of those stories would be pretty much well drafted, but you know, they're well started. So I do things different, but I'm bringing it up in case there are any listeners who need a reason to just sit down and write.

Because my first novel would never have happened, except someone told me about NaNoWriMo 

Hillary: [00:34:16] and I was like, that's 

Charity: [00:34:18] cool. I'm going to do that. So that's how my first novel. So thanks to Nana. Thanks to NaNoWriMo. I finished my first complete story and I'm like, but just because the idea is you sit you right.

You don't overthink it. So no overall, and, and it gives you the freedom to ride crap. And just get something on paper because every word counts, because every word counts, even if you're sitting there going, I really don't know what's going to happen in this next scene, but I'm going to keep typing because maybe you'll come to me.

Hillary: [00:34:51] Right. I'm writing a lot of like, this is really stupid and I don't know why they're doing it, but here we go anyway. 

Charity: [00:34:59] But you know, those things, let your brain go. Okay. This isn't a big deal. Cause I think like kale, you've thought about writing this book for so long that your brain is probably like 

Kahle: [00:35:11] six years.

Hillary: [00:35:14] So that is not the longest I've heard. 

Kahle: [00:35:18] It's not. 

Charity: [00:35:20] So, so your normal, just so you know, you're not, 

Hillary: [00:35:24] especially on a first novel. I mean the first time you do it, it always takes forever. It just does because. We do overthink things. And it's not something that is, well, not for everyone often. It's not something that is a specific right.

Their goal. It's just something that you're doing because you enjoy it. And because this story is in your head and you want to put it out there. So yeah, it takes awhile. 

Kahle: [00:35:45] Yohanis Brahms. He spent 20 years of drafting his first symphony and he burned multiple. Near completed symphonies, because he was like, this is trash, his second symphony, he spent the summer writing it and then it was like the next January.

Charity: [00:36:10] Yeah. Yeah. Cause he knew he could do it. Yeah. He finally knew he could do it. And I think, I think that's why I keep bringing it up man out. So maybe it's for you, kale. Maybe you're the just power in getting to the end, you know, even if you do, I'm only going to do 25,000 words, that's, you know, 500 something 

Hillary: [00:36:25] words a day, just yeah.

Charity: [00:36:27] That's something that I can do. Yeah. 

everyone: [00:36:33] As 

Hillary: [00:36:33] well, every day, you don't have to go back and read though. Right? It's you really don't. I mean, you remember what's happening. And so I get that going back to read and like rethink it and all that stuff. If you're just going forward and you have a goal, you don't, I go back to read often to try and figure out where I was like, what's happening next.

I can't. But if I'm doing it every day, that momentum is already there and you don't have to do that.  That's really cool. 

Charity: [00:36:59] See, I'm sitting here.

everyone: [00:37:13] Oh my goodness.

Charity: [00:37:29] Oh my goodness. You guys, it's so fun having you here. And 

Hillary: [00:37:33] I love this. It's like a weekly therapy session. 

Kahle: [00:37:37] It was really nice. Thanks guys. 

Charity: [00:37:39] Well, eventually we'll be as loud and boisterous as we are. And he'll just force his way. 

everyone: [00:37:48] I don't know if this 

Hillary: [00:37:48] is not the way you normally are. I kind of in the journey.

Kahle: [00:37:52] Oh, we'll find 

everyone: [00:37:53] out.

Charity: [00:37:58] Well, thanks you guys. And I guess we will see everybody next week or sometime soon. See you later. 

everyone: [00:38:05] All right. Stay tuned. 

Charity: [00:38:09] After the exit music for our first ever bloopers.

Kahle: [00:38:22] Welcome to loose leaf. A multi-author writing journal where we talk goals, the ups and downs of writing tech. Oh, that's a comma.

I'm reading copy.

Charity: [00:38:42] Oh, there's me. Every time we should probably change that because writing technique sounds like it should be writing techniques, but we're talking, but it's, maybe we should flip it somewhere. 

Hillary: [00:38:53] Like say it is what it is. I'll just take techniques out. 

Kahle: [00:38:59] Okay. Go for it. I mean, cause you can ups and downs of writing that pretty much encompasses anything.

You're going to talk about 

everyone: [00:39:07] scribble it right there. Totally. Hey, check out 

Kahle: [00:39:14] words on the 

everyone: [00:39:15] right.

Charity Bradford. 

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© 2019 by Charity Bradford.