A New Writer's Dilemma

by Steve Thornes

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Posted by DadTheLad
Next year will see my seventieth birthday. Earlier this year I took up writing for the first time in my life.

Being an information junky I researched, researched and researched again. The big question was 'how to plot?'. I started with the Aristotelian three-act structure (in my case it became the beginning, the muddle, and the end). From there I twirled like a fairground carousel. I went from the snowflake method to the sixteen-beat structure and on to more and more ever complicated concepts.

Which system would serve me the best? Eventually, I abandoned all hope and just started to write. A strange thing happened. Word followed word and paragraph followed paragraph.

After around a thousand words I took a rest. Overnight and early the next day a plot started to seed in my mind. Another thousand words and the seed began germinating. It was all still quite vague.

At this point, I began thinking about the basic three-act structure again and mysteriously it now all made sense.

What am I trying to say? In my humble opinion, it may be worth trying to mix a strict plot structure with some writing without a plan. At least for the first draft. The second draft will probably be the alchemist's formula that makes it all come together.

Since writing the first draft of my novel I came across a book titled 'Writing Into The Dark'. Here is a link http://www.stevethornes.co.za/blog.html#blog2

This book made a huge amount of sense to me. Maybe that’s just me as a new writer. Time will tell as my newfound writing career develops. Will I become a plot structure fanatic, a seat of my pants writer or something in between? I look forward to the adventure.

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