Author Topic: What's Your Story Construction Style?  (Read 1465 times)

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Offline Varg the wanderer

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What's Your Story Construction Style?
« on: October 12, 2012, 11:41:45 pm »
When hammering away at the keys on a new story, how do you write? Do you actually build an outline first, and go through start to finish? Do you have spurts of ideas and write the story in chunks before figuring out how to piece them together later? Do you write your ending first, and then start at the beginning because now you know where you are going?

I've tried all of the above methods, and the only one that really seemed to work for me was writing the ending first, and then  writing the story from the beginning.

What's your experience? Why do you do it that way?
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Offline Korin S.

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2012, 02:56:50 am »
Ah, I wish I could write linearly at all. I think I usually write... in a pyramid shape. For me, a story starts with an idea. It starts with a conceptual sentence and often, as a veteran author once instructed me, the words 'what if'. Then that idea goes into a certain section of a pocket journal I carry everywhere.

I think up little chunks of these stories every now and again, but once one of them starts growing faster than the others, I focus on it, because it's gained my attention. By then it would have formed at least a general outline, so then I can actively work on it, writing down and rubbing out and altering ideas every now and again, until it starts to look a bit like a story. Somewhere around here I come up with a general idea for the ending, so that I can thread these ideas from the start to the finish like beads on a necklace. This meta-writing goes on until I can play the story over in my head without anything seeming out of place.

Then comes the hard part. Actually typing the story up is a severe toll on my muse, so I like to leave it until the very end. This is when the jury-rigged ideas become 'real' and 'solid', though, and most of the details are added in here, like how someone talks, how places look, general refinement of the themes, etc. This part is slow and difficult work for me, and I like to get it right the first time, so I could spend hours just trying to find the right word, for example. Once that's done, though, then it is indeed all done; I almost never go back and change anything.

In other words... I think I use all three of those techniques  :P.

As a side note, I've never attempted anything over a few dozen pages. I don't really think this process would work for a novel-length story. Basically all I do is hold and work on a storyline in my head, and then type it out once and only once. And that would probably be hard to do for anything over a hundred pages.

Offline Old Rabbit

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2012, 11:27:31 am »
I don't think other than a outline to help keep the story together. One
needs to worry about where to start. If starting at the end works
for you that's fine. You can start anywhere. A story is full of scenes
so to speak. You can work on any of them as you go.

Remember it's your story, you can change it write it any way you like.

Then as you put the story together you can edit so it all fits together
the way you want it.

Work on the world you want the story to exist in. The better the
reader can mentally see it, the more interesting it will be.

Work on each character till you know them well. The
better you know them the better you can fit them into
your story.

Edit your work. All good authors rewrite/edit their stories.
It's part of the writing process..

Hope that's helpful.

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« Last Edit: October 13, 2012, 11:43:45 am by Old Rabbit »
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Offline Gauthar

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2012, 08:19:30 pm »
I do everything like that lol, chunks, ending first, random spurts, I even sometimes get it all played out in my head figure out how characters/muses act letting them breathe their own life into the story. With my current story I have up in here I played out events saw how characters would react, how emotionally battered they became, manipulative they became.

Even still sometimes while writing sometimes I space out and see what happens just letting the muses take control. I guess it just all depends on the writer and what works best for them

Offline DarkDemon

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #4 on: October 20, 2012, 08:59:20 pm »
I just write from one random idea I get. I'll be sitting around and suddenly have a plot brewing in my mind :D Then I go thinking of how I would actually get around to making said plot possible, like if I'm thinking of a war story, I'd start thinking of a catalyst and then who would the war be affecting, who would be gaining something (<-That's when I start thinking up characters and places). Stuff like that, I work out the details while I write and I don't ever use a rough draft of stuff, I've only done that like once or twice. I just start writing and kind of drop the story into place as if it were happening. I don't normally go back and completely change an idea in the plot, but I do go back and refine it. ^^ :D
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Offline Jet

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #5 on: October 20, 2012, 09:34:05 pm »
I started mine with only a world. I had a land already in my head, which I simply put characters and a storyline with to make the land make sense. I ended up just writing, no outlines or thought process really. I just wrote what I thought, and eventually scrapped the beginning for something that read a little smoother. After a few chapters in, I actually had thought my story out a little clearer, and wrote up an outline. By then though, all the characters and stuff had sort of molded themselves.

I dont think there is a set way to go about it..Im sure there are ways that work better than others, but no set perfect way. Just keep at it though, dont let a good story fall in between your couch.   ;)
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Offline Varg the wanderer

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2012, 03:37:49 pm »
I love reading everyone's responses!  It's fascinating to see how so may different ways there are out there, and why people choose the way they do.
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Offline Corvus Corone

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2012, 01:20:56 am »
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Offline Iara Warriorfeather

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Re: What's Your Story Construction Style?
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2012, 04:34:48 pm »
When hammering away at the keys on a new story, how do you write? Do you actually build an outline first, and go through start to finish? Do you have spurts of ideas and write the story in chunks before figuring out how to piece them together later? Do you write your ending first, and then start at the beginning because now you know where you are going?

I've tried all of the above methods, and the only one that really seemed to work for me was writing the ending first, and then  writing the story from the beginning.

What's your experience? Why do you do it that way?

I tend to write in spurts, although these can follow a certain flow from time to time. For more serious writing I write an outline to keep myself focused. Sometimes, as with my novel Iara's Crossing, I have a plot in my mind and I run with it smoothly, with some off the beaten path spurts here and there that add to a character in some ways. I can never write from end to beginning...it just seems weird to me lol, even though I know the end of the story for the most part when I write.  :D
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