Can Outlining Help You Write a Better Story?Writers often look upon outlines with fear and trembling. But when properly understood and correctly wielded, the outline is one of the most powerful weapons in a writer’s arsenal.
Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success will:
•Help you choose the right type of outline for you
•Guide you in brainstorming plot ideas
•Aid you in discovering your characters
•Show you how to structure your scenes
•Explain how to format your finished outline
•Instruct you in how to use your outline
•Reveal the benefits
•Dispel the misconceptions
Includes exclusive interviews with ten respected authors, answering important questions about outlining. Outlining can organize your writing and help you take your stories to the next level. Find out how!
What I thought:
This book couldn’t have come at a better time. I’m just beginning to plot my next trilogy, and this little gem is overflowing with wisdom and ideas!
I don’t think I’ve ever taken this many notes from one book, nor have I ever learned as much. It may well be the most important book on writing I’ve read to date o.o If it’s not, it’s high up there.
Don’t think outlining is for you? Weiland suggests ways of getting to know your book I’ve never considered before and, honestly, wouldn’t have called outlining myself. That’s worth a look, no?
Write yourself a list of the subjects, issues, and beliefs you’d fight and die for. If none of the items on your list make their way into your fiction, you should be asking yourself why not?
I’ve actually taken so many notes, I’ll have to summarise the points that sound the most interesting and fun for me and add them to my outline worksheet. If you’re subscribed to my newsletter, you might just get a revised version in the near future…
Weiland starts by addressing the most common misconceptions about outlining, such as ‘outlining limits my creativity’, and moves on to every part of your book and how you can get more out of it.
This book made me think about my book in whole new ways, and I’m excited to apply all of them when I throw myself into DREAMER.
Instead on stealing creative joy, the outline expands an author’s opportunities for exploring his story. He gets to experience the original act of creation in the outlining process, during which he comes up with the raw story idea, sort out implausibilities, and fills in plot holes. In essence, he’s constructing the skeleton of his story.
Every chapter starts with a quote on outlining from another author, and there are brief interviews with yet more authors after every chapter, so you get lots of viewpoints on the subject.
Honestly, I think if you’re opposed to outlining right now, you’ll think differently after reading this book. There are so many suggestions that there’s something for every writer, whether you think plotting is for you or not.
And at the heart of it there’s the advice to be open to new turns, even if they’re not in your original outline. Your outline is a roadmap, but it’s not the only way you can go. If you want to explore other roads along the way, you can.
Outlining Your Novel will help you find your way, whatever that is. It’s left me inspired and fired up to explore my world and my characters more, and I can’t wait to see what I’ll have by the time I’m done–or what it’ll grow into from there. It has completely transformed the way I plot and I’m so excited for it.
I can’t recommend it enough. If you’re going to treat yourself to any book on the craft, EVER, make it Outlining Your Novel.
Let me leave you with this little nugget of wisdom:
Remember: the outline is a guideline, not a law etched in stone.
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