Friday, August 14, 2009

Tierney’s Take On Writing

Someone asked me how I managed to write three novels in a short time. My answer was, it wasn’t easy.


I didn’t mean to say that to discourage him. I was merely telling him the truth. But I explained to him the following suggestions that had made my finishing a story a bit easier.


Before I start writing, I already have an idea on what the story is going to be, where, goal, motivation, conflict, and how it’s going to end. I have this information or guide written down and it stays at the bottom of my page and OneNote. But like my first draft, my guide is also in a draft stage. Meaning I could change how the ending, whenever I see fit. It’s not written in stone and sometimes a change is necessary.


I am assuming that you already have your heroine created the way you envisioned her. Now, what is her goal in your story. She’s not just a pretty thing your hero is in love with—I hope. What does she want? You got it? Now, write it down.


Here comes the next question: Why does she want to reach her goal? What drives her to reach for it. In short, what is her motivation. There’s got to be a reward.


And just like anything we want in life, getting it is not that easy. There is always a conflict, a threat, an obstacle that stops her from achieving her goal.


With all of these written down, I always set up a deadline. Deadlines, especially coming from your boss are irritating, annoying or nerve wracking. But setting it for yourself—it’s quite helpful.  A deadline pushes me to get off my lazy bum and write. Of course, you have to take your own deadline seriously.


There are things I have yet to learn. I am not an expert nor a big name in the publishing world. So what I shared here might not conform to what other authors believe on how to make writing easier. But so far, writing down a guide has made my writing less frustrating.


Questions? You can post it here or you can email me. I’d love to hear from you. :)




Mark Alders said...

I wrote a 100,000 word novel in 30 days...never again! LOL

Great post, Tierney.



Tierney O'Malley said...

Whoop whoop! You're a typing machine! Hey, thanks for the comment.


MK Mancos/Kathleen Scott/Kate Davison said...

I'm also a compulsive planner. I keep spiral notebooks with my outlines in them. That way if I have to make changes, or need to write long hand to jump start a thought, I have plenty of room to do so. It's also very portable so I can work anywhere.

I also like to know where i'm going, though I have to say, some of my most favorite novellas that I've written have been the ones I've pretty much pantsed, though, I don't think I could ever do that with a novel.


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