Thursday, February 25, 2016

A Glimpse into My Creative Process

First of all--WHOA! Sorry about the lack of updates lately. I woke up Monday morning and sort of had an emotional breakdown out of nowhere (I'm better now, though). Then Wednesday came along, and my sister/roommate decided to take a last-minute personal day due to inclement weather. And as we both have a propensity for video games, I had a feeling Wednesday was not going to be particularly productive, either.

But I knew I had to at least try to get something out today, since you've been waiting so patiently. And I thought: what better to talk about than my current writing process!

You know, that thing that I haven't been doing this entire past week. Sighhhh...

A typical work day starts with me doing my duty as a responsible adult and scrounging around for jobs (month two of the new place and I'm still looking).

But as soon as that obligation's out of the way, it's off to Google Drive to work on my current project, The Victor's Blade.


Here she is: the entirety of The Victor's Blade and its associated universe. Remember when I said I was an Over-Planner?

Lately with The Victor's Blade, I've been in planning mode rather than actually writing. This is due to a few reasons, mostly because I started writing the trilogy when I was eleven. I'm currently twenty-six, so there's plenty of plot items that I've realized simply don't work.

Most of my plot notes are in a single Excel-style document. Here's a glimpse at what it looks like (Uh... spoilers if you'd rather not know early Elven history for this universe):


As you can see, there's a whooooole lot of tabs.


As you also can (or can't) see, the color code is:
  • Red - Concrete plan; will definitely be going with this concept
  • Salmon Pink - Idea, possibility
  • Yellow - Idea or plan that contains a plot hole or raises a question I haven't figured out yet
Currently, I've been working on compiling all the notes in this document to a single doc that lays everything out in chronological order. (No screencap of that one, though. Too many sensitive spoilers!)

But here's a picture of the timeline instead! Oh, additional early history lore spoilers.

If you're curious:
  • Lime Green - Elven history
  • Black - Maddokar's ancestry
  • Dark Red - Misc. history
  • Orange - Human history
  • Purple - Zelmeon (fairy) history
  • Red - Thoranan/Jaranin's history
  • Green - Emarella's history
  • Dark Blue - Temanim/Zaelor's history

Lately, working on that chronological document has meant me going through the lineage of Jaranin, the protagonist--which means I'm mostly going through copy/pasting the story of each one of his ancestors, the dates they married and had kids, etc.

I've had Jaranin's lineage about 99% complete since around 2002. So since his lineage is basically finished, there's not much "actual" work I've been doing on it. Currently, it's just a matter of tweaking some stories I wrote when I was eleven and adjusting the overall flow so it better corresponds to the antagonist's plans.

As for the actual writing of the writing process...

I'll let you know when I get there. =P

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Anything in particular catch your eye? Are there some other documents you'd like to see more of? Let me know in the comments!

Keyboard photo courtesy of Neuneu and definitely not my own keyboard, which is filthy and disgusting and otherwise not photo-worthy. Originally posted on Pixabay.com.

From Him, To Him

9 comments:

  1. Wow! That's an elaborate process!

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    1. It's gotta be to keep everything in order! I've since added even more documents since posting this, but to be honest, I haven't kept them all up to date. I'll need to do that in the future. My Excel sheet is by far the most important doc besides the draft itself; that's where I keep an outline of the book and any potential ideas or possible plot holes.

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    2. I hear ya there. I use Evernote for so much stuff like my fiction projects, reviews, and even music ideas.

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    3. I'll definitely have to look into using Evernote for my next project. I really like how everything's in one place but you can divide it up how you see fit with the different journals. I'm still trying to find something that perfectly fits my needs. At this point, I might just end up creating wiki's. :P I had high hopes for Notebook.ai--and maybe the purchased version does this--but the free version doesn't have links between different aspects of the story like I thought it was advertising. I'd love to just be able to click on any important name, location, or phrase on a page and have it take me to all my current notes on that topic.

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    4. I would highly recommend it. I was shocked by how well organized and simple the system interface is and how many ideas I can keep track of instead of just buying a ton of notebooks. Having a premium account was worth the annual fee with cloud storage and offline usage. I've never heard of Notebook.ai though.

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    5. Here's a link to Notebook.ai if you're curious, though I can't say I recommend the free version if you already have a project well into the works. It definitely wasn't worth it for me to transfer over my TVB ideas, much to my chagrin. I think it's a great tool for brainstorming a new fictional universe though!

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    6. Thanks for the link. I have so many projects on Evernote that I can't just transfer them, but it's cool that it can focus on things like continuity and other things. Is it more geared towards roleplayers, by any chance?

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    7. No, it's definitely made with traditional writers in mind.

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