Gideon Plan: A Different Way of Writing
One of the hard parts of being a writer is coming up with a writing process that works for you. Some writers come up with a story outline and then write. Some create interesting characters, throw them into a bad situation, and then sees what happens. Me– I write in bursts.
Let me explain what a burst is. When I start out with a story, I only have a general idea of the plot, characters, and setting. Then I start doing research. I find pictures, books, movies, and other things that inspire me with settings, characters, and plot. When these little inspirations strike, I write them down. I call them bursts.
Bursts are usually short bits of prose that have no connection to a whole butt sounds like something that would be in the story. For instance, the burst might be a line of dialogue one of my characters say. It might be part of a situation that I see in my mind that I see unfolding in the story. The important part to understand is that bursts just kind of hang out there with no true context, however, they are often strong, fresh, and have a good honesty to them. When I get a whole bunch of them, I link them together and the next thing I know, I have a rough draft of a story. I then go back, fill in the details, flesh out areas that are a little lean, and ax things that don’t belong. This gives me my first draft.
I stumbled upon this process by accident. I think it may have evolved from my video game experience where I like to develop by iteration. Basically this means you take a good idea, add a little that makes it better, add a little bit more, add a little bit more and then eventually you got a great game. Some call this Miyamoto’s Box (of Nintendo fame).
I’m attaching here an example of some bursts. This particular group has to do with Percy, one of Gideon’s Rangers. Percy is a British adventurer who recently joined the team when they were in Italy, just before the Civil War. Percy poses as a war correspondent for London’s The Times and travels freely between Union and Confederate lines. This allows him to spy for Gideon. A bit of an arrogant ass, he is highly trained and dangerous, and carries specialized equipment for his espionage missions. While behind lines, he uses the alias“Archibald Strickland.”
When I first wrote these bursts, they were not in order. I cleaned them up a little so you can read them easier. My bursts are not usually this easy to read and I’m about the only one who can decipher them.
How about you? What’s your writing process? I’d love to hear how you create!
Note: Thanks to Brian McNamara and Kathleen’s McCormick’s input on Percy!
This entry was posted on March 3, 2012 by danbracewell. It was filed under My Manuscripts, The Gideon Plan and was tagged with aspiring author, Civil War, Civil War Story, Fiction, Free Story, Knights of the Golden Circle, Science Fiction, Steam Punk, Steam Punk Story, The Confederacy, writing process.