Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Outline Fever!

Austin Kleon has a post about the outline of Faulkner's novel that he wrote on the walls of his office. Since Austin is psychic, he actually wrote this post on Thursday, July 6, 2006, but it is so germane to my last post, I stole his photo and I'm happily posting a link to his post.

Considering that I've only actually spoken to Austin a couple of times in person, it's amazing how much stuff I steal from his blog.

My outline is going along nicely. Right now it looks like this:

Baby Goth

  1. (Prologue) Rhea Drunk and Dial 8/28/2005
  2. Amanda 8/19
    1. Party
    2. Skinny dipping
    3. walk in the woods
    4. home
    1. Party
  3. Rhea walking with the saints 8/20
    1. Argument: Rhea plans to leave Butch
    2. Asks Amanda about moving in with her if she would move back
  4. Amanda needs some sort of tension point.
  5. Road trip stuff needs to happen that does not feel like one damn thing after another, but like a carefully constructed set of incidents that illuminate the themes of the novel and consistently reveal aspects of character. It would help if they would also be entertaining.
  6. Hurricane 8/29
I figure getting through C takes up about fifty pages of the novel. Which means that about 300 pages of the novel are detailed in D. and E.

I need to do more research for F., but I'm expecting that the research will help with figuring out the story there.

Well, at least I have the next scene...


Anonymous Anonymous said...

i find this internet thing creepy and wonderful at the same time. i mean, especially for a writer, you tend to feel like you really get to know someone through their writings. blogs even more so, i think.

i hope after the big move we can invite ourselves over for some good cookin' and dachschund petting. maybe a jam session, too.

July 04, 2007 10:22 PM  
Blogger Maureen McHugh said...

Austin, all of the above.

July 04, 2007 11:17 PM  
Blogger Beth Adele Long said...

I volunteer for the hurricane research part, having been through the miserable '04 hurricane season. :)

July 06, 2007 8:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

RE: outlining, Michael Chabon:

AVC: How do you go from an idea for a project to some kind of stem to follow?

MC: Typically, I start with just a very vague sense of what I'm doing and where I'm going, what it's about. I might spend 100 pages trying to get to know the world I'm writing about: its contours, who are my main characters, what are their relationships to each other, and just trying to get a sense of what and who this book is about. Usually around that point of 100 pages, I start to feel like I'm lost, I have too much material, it's time to start making some choices. It's typically at that point that I sit down and try to make a formal outline and winnow out what's not working and what I'm most interested in, where the story seems to be going. Start over, in a way, but with a much clearer sense of where I'm going and where the story's going. That gets me through the first draft. Then I'll give it out to readers––my wife, agent, and editor—and solicit their feedback, take all their notes, and see which of them resonate, and then start it again. I've learned mostly that it's really long, it takes a long time, is often boring, you go through bad periods where you lose all sense of what you're doing, moments of doubt, and sometimes, but not always, you can push through that and eventually things start to pick up.

July 06, 2007 1:16 PM  
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^^ nice blog!! ^@^

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March 24, 2009 2:38 AM  

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