Monday, December 10, 2012


My vacation from NaNo lasted a day. A single day in which I didn't write, but instead read through the manuscript. Even after the brain numbing exhaustion of writing 50k in a month, I couldn't break away.

I'm pretty happy the story is flowing well. However, upon reading FIXED from the beginning, I saw all the areas that need to be fixed. I want to get those dangling plot threads and foreshadowing events, fleshed out before heading into the climax of the story. 

I mentioned in the last post that I had a date with a wizard, well, before that I stumbled upon his creator, Jim Butcher's Livejournal via my friend/critique partner, jallen327.  

According to Mr. Butcher, "I'm mostly going to use this livejournal to share what I know about writing with any interested partiesMy approach to writing fiction is grounded in the notion that a methodical, structured use of learned story craft skills gives a writer an excellent basis on which to approach writing fiction."

His journal rocked my world. Literally.

Rather than read Mr. Butcher's book, COLD DAYS, I spent the night reading about the mechanics of crafting a story. He breaks it down in easily digestible chunks for the aspiring author to understand. I had a blast.

Then, I read his book (which is awesome) where I saw how he used the techniques he wrote about. I admit to being inspired. *insert fangirl squeal*

With this in mind, I outlined my story so far. I broke the chapters into scenes, then highlighted certain plot elements within my story arcs with colored font: romance, mystery, supernatural. This is the result.

Fixed- novel outline, by Angie Sandro

I've never been an outliner, but this worked well. With it minimized, I can see where I'm lacking in certain plot elements, like Chapter 6 and 7 are almost all geared toward the mystery. Now, I can seed in elements which are lacking to make the story more balanced. Notes are put in the comment boxes for each scene or highlighted.

Ex: Note to self, switch around Chapter 2 and 3 for better flow.

I've even added chapters and scenes that are unwritten. I know exactly where the plot is going as I wade through what Mr. Butcher calls the "Great Swampy Middle" of the story and dive into the climax.

All the preceding elements should come together in an explosion of mayhem (with a firm resolution at the end, promise :-) It's gonna be huge. Not everyone is going to make it out alive.


P.S. I'd like to get Sharing Our Voices going again, so if you're interested in sharing what inspires your creativity, please leave me contact information so I can schedule your very own guest post.


Angie Sandro


  1. Awesome post, sis! Must check out Mr. Butcher's blog.

    1. I think it will be a resource I go back to over and over until I have it memorized.

  2. This approach to outlining sounds great! However, ever since NaNoWriMo, I'm trying not to do any outlining at all. I used to be a big planner, but now I'm writing with minimal planning and it seems to be working for me so far. So I'm going to stick with that and see how it goes. Hope the editing goes well for you - it sounds like you're having a lot of fun with it!

    1. I did have a lot of fun with it. Too much! I realize now that I've been doing anything and everything to avoid writing this really pivotal upcoming chapter. It's one of those chapter that I see perfectly in my imagination, but I'm terrified of putting on paper in fear it won't translate as well.

      I think I just need to write it. For better or worse. I can always edit it later.

      I'm so happy your ms is going well:-) I'm waving *pom poms* for you. GO, SAMARA, GO!!

      Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment.

    2. Ah, I know that feeling well! When I have chapters like that, I usually try to write them as quickly as possible, just to get down everything that's in my head. And then I go back and tidy them up afterwards. I think you just need to dive in and get that chapter done. Ready, steady, go! : D


Now it's your turn. What do you think?

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