Angie Azur is a YA Sci-fi Writer.
Writer for PALEO Magazine.
Former Intern at the Andrea Brown Literary Agency.
SCBWI & COWG Member.


Thursday, June 30, 2011

Project Plan 1b: O is for Outline

Answer these questions to create a stronger foundation for your story.


  • Narrator: 1st person? 3rd? detached narrator?
  • P.O.V. - does it switch? Or stay close to the MC?
  • Tense - Past or Present?
  • Setting - Where? When?
  • Timelines - What is the time constraint? What is moving the story from A to B? 
  • Tone - Simple? Complex? Straightforward? Open? Closed?
  • Major Conflict - What is your MC's major conflict - the main one
  • Minor Conflicts - Man vs. Self? Man vs. Man? Man vs. Nature? Man vs. Fate? Man vs. Society?
  • Rising Action - Leading up to the climax
  • Climax - When does everything change for your MC?
  • Falling Action - Coming down from the big change
  • Themes:
      1. The Great Journey - a series of episodic adventures
      2. Loss of Innocence - coming of age
      3. The Noble Sacrifice - for anyone, a loved one, an enemy, a group
      4. The Great Battle - people or groups of people in conflict
      5. Fall From Grace - doing something God should do = always followed by misfortune
      6. Love and Friendships - romantic love or buddy films
      7. Fate - from good to bad or bad to good / some other force is guiding the mc
      8. Revenge - bitter sweet
      9. Trickery - a group or person tricks someone into doing something
      10. Mystery - something unexplained happens
You might also want to consider what script writer's consider when developing a movie script:
  • What is sellable in this book? Products? Can they sell a wand? A mug? A t-shirt from it?
  • Product tie-ins? Are there any major companies that might back this book if they have a tie in to sell their product? Type of car the mc drives? Type of drink? Toy or electronics the mc uses or wants?
This may seem like a huge task, but I promise you, if you understand these questions about your novel, it will be easier to create and write and revise. 

Write~on
Angie


Monday, June 27, 2011

Project Plan


When a story creeps into your creative mind you must lay a strong foundation for it to build upon. To do this, create a Project Plan:
plan |plan|
noun
1 a detailed proposal for doing or achieving something : the UN peace plan.
[with adj. ] a scheme for the regular payment of contributions toward a pension, savings account, or insurance policy : a personal pension plan.
2 (usu. plans) an intention or decision about what one is going to do : I have no plans to retire.
3 a detailed diagram, drawing, or program, in particular
a fairly large-scale map of a town or district : a street plan.
a drawing or diagram made by projection on a horizontal plane, esp. one showing the layout of a building or one floor of a building. Compare with elevation (sense 3).
  • a diagram showing how something will be arranged : look at the seating plan.
First begin with asking the questions: WHY? HOW? WHO? WHERE? WHAT? WHAT IF?
Next create a diagram with words like: TITLE, GENRE, TIMELINE, AUDIENCE, GENRE, MAIN CHARACTER(S), PROTAGONIST(S), SETTING, PLOT, ORIGINATION OF IDEA, MARKET, COMPLICATION(S), ORIGINAL IDEAS/NEVER DONE BEFORS, and of course add some more of your own making.
A sample plan might look like this:

WORKING TITLE: REDWOOD BLOOD
WHO? Ben Corbin - turning 13, but believes his blood is cursed. 
WHY? Ben’s father goes missing, and he thinks it’s the curse. He goes into the dark woods to find him.
WHERE? Redwoods, California
WHAT HAPPENS? Ben gets caught by woodland creatures (some evil some good) - beings of the woods, hidden for centuries. They send him on a treasure hunt. 
WHAT IF? If Ben finds the treasure, he becomes the Heir to the Trees, if not, then he will become enslaved by the evil woodlands. 
HOW? Ben’s X-friend insults him, then said X-friend’s Grandmother goes nuts, hits herself an blames Ben. Ben fleas into the woods, vowing to find his father.

GENRE: Middle-Grade- Action/Adventure/Fantasy
AUDIENCE: 9 - 13 year-olds
SETTING: Old Growth Redwood Groves Present Day
ORIGINATION OF IDEA: 2006 - visit to Muir Woods
MARKET: Fantasy lovers/Nature lovers/Young people

This is the foundation of my novel, REDWOOD BLOOD. Name have changed from the original idea, but it has remained pretty true to the first idea. And this Project Plan has helped me stay on course.
I hope this has helped you and good luck to all you writers!