I doubt I’m ready to convert, but today I was blessed with a writing tool from author Julie Jarnagin. Julie mentioned today while tweeting that after attempting to ‘pants’ her novel she was failing and going back to her outline. Always hoping to learn from a pro, I immediately tweeted back to her and asked if she wouldn’t mind sharing her outline with me. Not only did she send me links to find out more about the method she uses ( Randy Ingermanson’s Snowflake method), but she attached a copy of the outline as well. Eager to see how she goes about writing her novels, I printed a copy to study. It’s on my desk and during my downtime this weekend you can be sure I’ll be filling in the blanks, hoping to power through my stalled story.
Aren’t most writers like that? Always eager to learn how another writer has done it. How did they write the story that sold? What is the secret to starting, finishing and selling a novel? What I’m learning as I continue in my apprenticeship in fiction writing is that there is no secret. Every writer will tell you his or her way to writing a novel and it may work for them. Will it work for you? Maybe. Maybe not. The only way to find out is to try it. Like looking for the perfect bathing suit (ugh) it requires a lot of trying on and discarding. Like the bathing suit quest, it’s going to take a lot of time. There will no doubtedly be lots of starts and stops and discarding of ‘the perfect technique’ until you stumble on what works for you.
I still haven’t found the one method that works for me. But unlike searching for the perfect bathing suit, each technique or method we try brings us one step closer to the perfect fit. I have a feeling that when I find what works for me I’ll be ready to dive in!
So for today I’ll leave you with a link to Randy Ingermanson’s Snowflake method and this old adage: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again”.
Meet gracious author Julie Jarnagin at http://juliejarnagin.com/