I love science advancement. I love it more when advances are made in an area that sounds unreal or far fetched. Some of you are familiar with Singularity where everyone is either a robot or cyborg and computers and machines do all the thinking for us. Well that is an over simplification but the concept is there. We are headed in that direction and this scientist is leading the way. Check this video out, and post your opinion on the subject. Do you think it will enhance the human race, or will it destroy it?
I see a lot of writers complaining that their plotting is causing them distress. I was wondering if they had ever tried any other way? I know I went through the stage when I thought that I must plot out story before I write it. This of course is absolutely false.
In fact they should try other methods which could increase their productivity and overall enjoyment of writing. There are the plotters who plot from beginning to end before they write a single page. This method is great if you don't mind writing the story more than once. After all, if you plot the entire story, have you not written the story or created the story completely at that point? To me this boxes me in. I wrote it in the plot, nothing else needs to be added, so now my writing becomes a chore, a copy of the plot. This does work great for a lot of writers.
Edit as you go writers will write a few pages and edit them before moving onto more pages. This is great if you can write first then edit. Far too many writers fall into the trap of trying to edit while they write and this can cause writers block. Trying to get your left and right side brain to work in unison that way is tedious and can cause great frustration. So be aware of this.
Seat of the pants writers get the idea in their head, they have their main character in their head and they write from beginning to end before they edit. Although this method is quite liberating because there is no "written in stone" plot to follow and they don't worry about the editing till its done. The downfall is this method usually requires more editing when finished, greater expansion on characters and holes the size of the moon. This method is great for those who do not edit their own work or enjoy editing themselves. There are a great many famous writers who use this method.
Lastly there is the hybrid method. A method I chose to use (created it for myself) because it incorporates the freedom of seat of the pants and plotting. I like to do a general plot. Not too expansive just the idea itself with some characters I know I will use. I flesh out the characters themselves. Give each a page of questions to get an idea of their personalities. So they are detailed, but not the story.
Then I allow my characters to do what they would do. I place road blocks and twists and turns in their path, and let them do what they would do in that situation. This seat of the pants method does not require as much editing as the aforementioned one above because you know your characters already, they do what they would do. This allows me to be creative, see the story for the first time as it happens (which is great fun to me) and on occasion, I surprise myself with great satisfaction of a well written story.
So there you have it. Several methods. You don't have to pick just one, you can mix and match as I did, but you should try each of them. Find which works best for you and go from there. It really couldn't hurt to try and you could end up with a new method that works one hundred times better than your current one.
When I posted the links to Sean Dietrich's art and his website I was very impressed as many of you were. I just had to find out if he could spare some time to answer a few questions for my readers. Well it was more for myself... (Giggle) I really love art in many forms and Sean's art is not to be missed.
I emailed Sean and he graciously agreed to do the interview. So here it is
When did you realize that you were going to be an artist?
According to my mother I told her at age 5 I was going to be an artist, and haven't looked back since. I always knew what I wanted to do and all throughout my youth, adolescence and adulthood nothing else has pulled my attention away from that.
What was your first paid gig?
I believe my first paid gig was for a family friend who ran an advertising agency when I was 16. I was commissioned to draw a political cartoon for a client. My first major paying gig was for Sony Playstation as a concept artist on an unreleased 'Twisted Metal' game.
I noticed that you do some black and whites. What makes you decide what will be black and white and what will be in color?
At this point 95% of my work is in color. I do the inside of my comics in black and white and I'll upload some of the black and whites for paintings to show the process. Everything starts the same way, even my paintings, with the pencils, then inks and then acrylic paint for color. I don't color digitally because you can't get that gritty, true feel to a piece of art.
I didn’t see any on your site but was wondering if you ever do a black and white and recreate it as a color painting or vice versa?
Usually if I have a black and white sketch on my site it is almost always used to figure out a color painting. I have been commissioned to do black and white illustrations for books that eventually I would like to see colored, but that's very far down the road.
Do you draw your inspiration from any particular place?
Like any artist will tell you inspirations come from all over whether you like it or not, or whether you are looking in that particular direction or not. Mine are heavily influenced by war, the effects of war on children, pin up girls, music, and old movies. I look to the past quite frequently to draw upon the honest and raw pictures that history has painted for us of humanity. I'm a firm believer of remembering the past to prevent the same failures in the future, although humanity at this point is succeeding in that concept about as much as a crack addict succeeds at saving to pay their rent.
What is your goal for your art, or are you already where you want to be?
I'm definitely not where I want to be, but at the same time, I know I'll never achieve that goal. If I'm to continue to work as an artist, and use it as a craft that helps me work though frustration or capture the peace in my life, then the only time I could conceivably 'be' where I want to be would be in my grave. I enjoy what I do too much to see some sort of finite end, and all I can wish for is to keep being a part of amazing projects and achieving my personal goals one by one. There's a sense of having a world worth of ideas on my shoulders, and just like Atlas, I have to spend my time holding them up until I am able to accomplish them. As far as some specific goals, I'm releasing a new kid's book now called 'The Fruits of Our Labor' and going on a 10, 000 mile U.S. Live Art Tour to promote it. I'm also looking forward to putting out another new book 'The Nazi and the Rabbit' with award winning journalist Richard A. Webster. There might be some animation or movies in the future, but that is a ways off.
I noticed that you have done comics. I published an indie comic a few – years – back. I had a lot of fun doing it. Was this venue exciting to you?
Yes, I love the combination of words and art in one format, and it gives me a chance to work in black and white, which is definitely something I miss being a full color painter most of the time. I'm experimenting with format for my new book 'The Nazi and the Rabbit'. It'll be a hybrid between a novel a comic and some full 2 page spread paintings. There's a definite claustrophobic feeling working within traditional panels in the comic realm, so Rich (the writer) and I are working on a layout that allows the book to look as messed up as the story is. I hate hearing from the comic world that you “have to be able to tell what is going on by just looking at the pictures alone.” Why? Comics are the perfect marriage between art and word, so with my books I tend to make sure one relies on the other. I think that nonsense is just the battle cry of those artists who can't write and writers who can't draw. It's been a few years since I have put out a comic so I'm excited to see the end result of the new book.
Of all the different venues you have done, live art, colors, black and whites, comics, book covers, movies, games, etc, etc… which to you find the most exciting to do?
Definitely the live painting. In all honesty painting in front of hundreds, or even thousands, of people is quite relaxing to me. It's what I was put here to do, and if I can do it in front of a wondering and excited crowd it makes it all the sweeter. It's also something that is very personal to me in that when I moved to San Diego, I was the only artist doing live painting on a regular basis that I knew of. I knew quite a few artists that did the occasional event, but I was out a few times a month, and then at one point I was out 6 nights a week for almost 2.5 years straight. The live art offers so much more than a way to promote my books as it started out to be. I'm now educating and inspiring other artists to push their art on their own and not to waste money on art school, when what they really need is a business course.
Which of those do you find more tedious?
The tedium is definitely found in the comic work. After years between books, live painting on large canvas, it's tough to then sit with this small piece of bristol board and work out several panels on a page. I enjoy it, but it drives me to fidget and then to the wonders of drinking!
Do you have any advice for up and coming artists out there?
Yes, know that art school and conventional paths are not necessarily the way to go. There's about as much definite in going to school and being guaranteed a job in the industry, as there is a definite answer to 'What is art?' It is going to be a mixture of knowing the right people and getting your art in front of them, good business sense, and of course learning your craft and making sure you execute it honestly and with thought put into it. Not every piece you do will turn heads, but just make sure the ones it does go away with an understanding that you put an actual effort into your piece.
Again I want to thank you for taking time out of your day to answer some questions for my readers.
Is there anything else that you would like to say to my readers?
Thanks for reading and I hope my artwork brings you some sort of enjoyment. If I know that I'm enriching your lives with my art, then my art is definitely going in the right direction.
I noticed that you have a Kickstart project going. Tell us about what you are trying to accomplish.
Yes, our kickstarter project can be found at http://kck.st/lsrexT. We are raising enough money to cover the publishing costs of the book and handle some of the tour costs as well. Most of our own money will fund the tour, but if the public helps with the publishing, then the more time I can spend out on the road teaching kids, doing up some killer live art at the clubs and conventions, and spreading the word of art. You can pledge a buck or $5000, and for each level starting at $10.00 you'll get art, prints, books, original paintings and more! I'm also accepting sponsorship from companies which will include having your logo on the side of my tour trailer—a logo that will be seen across the 10,000 miles that I am driving. For more info on corporate sponsorship or any other questions please email Sean at email@example.com. For more info on the tour, art, books, and more log onto www.industriacide.com.
And there you have it. I hope you find this interview as informative and entertaining as I did. Remember that Sean's artistic talent can be commissioned. For more information check out his website above.
I wanted to see mother; I didn’t want to see Harold, her ‘man friend’. I remembered my brother broke the kitchen window. Harold would not let me tell my side. I took the punishment. When I left home, I tried to tell her about the window; Harold interrupted again. It was enough to make me never return. My brother went on to become a criminal. He cost the family thousands in fines, but he was the baby, Harold’s favorite.
I heard nothing from them the seven years I’ve been gone. When I arrived, my mother was sitting on the porch enjoying her favorite soda. I sat in the car watching, remembering many days sitting by her, helping her finish her drink. Her laugh was infectious and often would cause everyone within earshot to at least smile.
I noticed how worn her face had become. The lines in her face, mapped her life, the hardships, the sadness and the cheerful times. Her hands had become frail with age, and her legs were webbed with varicose veins. I started up the walk, she hadn’t noticed me. I noticed how the yard was well kept and the flowers had been planted as they always had. I wondered how she had managed to do this in her condition; it was always I that helped her.
I was almost to the steps when she saw me. At first she hesitated. It was as if she couldn’t deem it was me. I could see the tears welling up in her eyes. I ran up the steps to her and hugged her small frame.
I asked about everything that happened since my departure. My brother was in prison again. Harold had died about a year and a half after I left. I felt my stomach sicken at the thought of my mother being alone at home for the past five years. I nearly cried at the thought.
We talked for hours; I hadn’t noticed that the sun started to set. We sat in silence for a few moments. I looked out into the garden. I asked how she faired with the gardening, if someone had helped her. She smiled, asking me if I remembered when I was a boy, when I use to tell her about gnomes in the garden. She always thought I had an active imagination. She told me she was sorry for not believing about the gnomes.
I smiled thinking she was teasing, but I could see she believed it to be true. I worried about her mental health, being alone all the time. Before I could utter a word she shushed me, placing a finger over her lips. I turned to look and memories of childhood rushed back, there they were, the gnomes I played with as a child, tending the garden. One looked at me. I could see he remembered me; he smiled and turned to pull weeds.
When I could speak again I found myself saying… “I am home.”
I love art as some of you already know, and am a huge supporter of the arts. I learned of this artist through a friend on Twitter and decided that I too would help their quest to spread excellent art across the globe. Sean's art is amazing to say the least. Writers looking for cover art for their novels would be well advised to seek out Sean Dietrich.
Sean Dietrich is a huge, festering, untamed talent. As San Diego’s top live painter, Dietrich has lashed his paint, pain and egomaniacal perspective across the faces of hundreds of helpless canvasses during more than 900 live events earning him over 70 art awards. His published works include “industriacide,” “Fervor,” “Mess,” “Catalepsy,” and the upcoming books “The Nazi and the Rabbit,” “The Fruits of Our Labor,” and “I Brought the Gutter,” a compendium of art celebrating 10 years of Dietrich’s live painting. His weird artistic and literary productions have garnered comparisons to Ralph Steadman, Tim Burton, Hunter S. Thompson and Orson Welles. Dietrich’s Jameson-bred talent has infected the graphic novel, comic, gaming and film industries, laying waste to each with nihilistic abandon. You can find out more about Dietrich's work and his upcoming 10,000 miles U.S. Live Art Tour at www.industriacide.com.
Commissions are available for book covers and inside artwork. I work in pen and ink with hand painted acrylic for color. Pricing is available upon request and depends on the size and complexity of what you are trying to accomplish. Please take a look at my art style before commissioning me to do some artwork--I can paint most anything except straight portraits, but do expect it in my style. I offer discounts to indie book publishers as I'm always supporting and helping new talent to come into the world without killing them at the bank. You can check out Richard A. Webster's book 'Bubbles from Atlantis' for samples of what I do. The Amazon.com link is HERE. I've also done work with Stone Arch Books on several children's books, feel free to search my name on Amazon to check them out. Thanks and I look forward to working with you!
You can visit Sean's website http://www.industriacide.com Please leave any comments, questions or information you know about this artist.
I met Daniel Hay via Twitter when he quickly came to my aid as I posed a question of grammar to the entire Twitter community. I was very grateful for his quick answer to my question and very impressed by his knowledge. I asked him to be interviewed as I believe that his knowledge and expertise could help a great many writers in all genres. Enjoy!
I noticed on your site that you include services for fiction, non fiction and full academic. Which do you find the hardest to work with?
Daniel: Fiction tends to be more lenient and academic is more tedious but I think non-fiction is the hardest to work with. When editing I look at content as well as context and if I have not previously experienced the subject matter it is much more difficult to evaluate and respond to it. That makes non-fiction more difficult.
Which do you find most rewarding?
Daniel: > In general I find good fiction most rewarding but I often find it either poorly written or overwritten. In those cases it is not rewarding. As a life-long academic I really enjoy the final product of academic works even if I have had to edit 600-plus footnotes, (said with a chuckle).
How would a writer/Author benefit by using your editorial services versus using a firm or larger company for the same services?
Daniel: Plain and simple: An author benefits from using an editor. When using myself as the editor the client finds that I'm more willing to spend extra time without the increase in expense. I am willing to review the changes made following my editing, and again, that is often a reduced cost or even no cost. I re-read the manuscript several times before returning it to the author. Perhaps one of the most crucial details is that I generally have faster turn around times than other services. Two things that are good to bear in mind are that I don't have to accept any client work and I don't accept more workload than I can handle in a reasonable time.
Tell us why and/or how you started as an editor.
Daniel: I wish my English teachers could tell you I was going to be a good editor. They probably cringed at the very thought. I was the only male in typing class - and I attribute typing skills, and later high speed keyboarding, to continued exposure to the need for editing. Often I was typesetting or copy writing for employers. Through several businesses and employers I had to do the advertisement copy. Together they just added up to editing.
I published one of the first magazines on diskette, wrote columns, wrote some technical books, and did more and more editing on non-fiction and academic projects. In 1995 I was asked to be the Editor for a specialty magazine which I turned down to follow another project that was publishing in another venue. I ended up doing more editing in the long run.
More recently, I nearly opened a new publishing house that would have combined the best aspects of self publishing, independent publishing and traditional publishing. It is not only a mouthful but turned out to be more effort than I was willing to do on my own even when I had a tentative associate. That associate has since successfully published and is now constantly busy writing and promoting her works.
How long have you been an editor?
Daniel: > Technically I've been editing since high school more than 35 years ago. Professionally I've been editing both employed and freelance since 1991.
I know a great many writers both published and yet to be published, as I am sure you do as well. Some are excellent seasoned writers and others are not. Even if they are not, they tend to defend their work sometimes to the death. Do you ever get customers like that? The ones that want to know why their work was edited in such a way? How do you handle these trying times?
Daniel: There are several levels of editing that may come in to play in such a situation. As a freelance editor I show the client all suggested corrections and/or changes and then wait for them to respond. Based upon their responses I review my work and finalize my edits. This often is a process of exchanged emails and text files. Such situations generally concerns content and context. As an employed editor I am tasked with making the document reflect the author/company and follow guidelines to do so. However, as a Chief Editor, which I had the honor of being in 2010, I have a bit more leeway. At that level there is a contract that generally indicates that the publisher has final say. Many publishers seem to follow a standard that up to 30% can be changed without author approval. I've had a few instances where I had to exercise that editorial authority but generally aspiring authors are more willing to adjust the manuscript.
There is a point to remember: Unless under a publishing contract, the author has the final say on edits. On the other hand, a publisher never has to publish anything that does not meet their expectations. I prefer to work with the author or the client. You did ask about those "trying times" though, and the single greatest reason I require a bit more than half of the expected fee as a non-refundable deposit is for the few clients who go ballistic and refuse to pay for work done. My feeling is that the work is the author’s and my job is to help them polish it to its greatest shine but they can quit polishing at any time.
With so many venues for writers to publish such as Self Publishing, Independent Publishing, Traditional Publishing and many others, do any of these effect your work as an editor in any way? If so how does this affect your work?
Daniel: It is my feeling that a freelance editor has a greater range of clientele due to the self publishing mediums. I shudder to see some of the material published via self or independent because no effective editing was applied. As an example, my own typed responses to this interview - I'll probably kick myself later when I see errors in my text. I'd venture that 99.99% of writers can NOT edit there own work. I've often called it the finger-brain link. If I typed it I know it is correct and my brain will overlook mistakes in re-reads because it thinks it was done correctly the first time. And yet, even though the self publish mode and the independent publisher mode should create more clientele, writers are relying on critique partners, beta readers, or other struggling writers and assuming that meets the definition of having been edited. This is creating, especially with ebook's, a great many titles that no publisher would have been able to put into print. The cost of editing can be reasonable and the resultant manuscript much more attractive to a publisher or to a market buying your work.
As for Traditional Publishing, I am pleased that most adhere to standards, even if the standards seem different from one publisher to the next. This gives both author and editor a framework of quality to work toward. I am not presently employed by a traditional publisher so I am not editing within their workload. Their loads are tremendous and to me cause manuscript edits that are either generalized by over worked editors, or a bit less polish because unskilled editors are having to be used.
I noticed that you also compose music. I was able to listen to some of your compositions and wanted to thank you for sharing that with me.
Daniel: Gosh, I'd rather thank you for listening to some of them. If your readers are interested I have some of my compositions uploaded to http://danielhay.podbean.com as playable mp3 files. The available printed works are at http://danielhay.magcloud.com in soft cover format.
Writer, editor and composer, do you have any other artistic talents like drawing or painting?
Daniel: I wish I had the ability to draw and paint because most of my writing efforts are for MG. I need illustration in order to push on to some self publishing of my own works. Most traditional publishers provide their own illustrators for titles they agree to publish. My first two children's books were contracted with the publisher providing the illustrations. I have one story with illustrations I wanted to publish with three or four others but have yet to find illustrations for them.
I do have other talents - I am an excellent Tenor singer, Conductor and Performer. I’m a great gardener, excellent cook, and enjoy making fresh cheeses and yogurt. I sometimes make a living with my photography or head off to the mining claim to seek gold dust.
If you could only do one of these things which would it be?
Daniel: I am probably more successful in composing and have been at it longer than editing or writing. There are days when I can not write or compose and then I am really glad to have a client manuscript needing edits. Other days I fight to separate the music and text coming out of my head. I have written stories and mid-way been forced to stop and compose. Sometimes I have to close down my piece of music in order to get text on paper or into the computer. The two are not playing fairly with me. Editing, at least, treats me with more respect. It may interest you to know that even as I answer the interview questions I have two pieces of music, one story in progress, and one client edit file open on my laptop. For your answer, I believe I'd have to say composing would have to be the one thing if I could not do anything else.
Do you have any advice for new writers out there?
Daniel: New writers need to keep writing against all other odds. Use every source you can to improve you writing skills and to improve your manuscripts. Don't believe everything you read in social networks, but do keep those channels open because there is a wealth of information that will apply to your efforts. And, by all means, don't jump at self publishing without truly having your work edited.
Any advice for Editor wannabes?
Daniel: If you haven't had the responsibility for fully edited manuscripts then work for a publisher. If it is only a side-line for extra income I would recommend against doing it. Instead of a side-line, editing needs to be pulling at you and you have to want to do it. Some editors are not going to be authors just as some authors will never be editors.
A peeve I can't seem to get past is editors who make comments about client work in social media. A client's work is private until they release it. Do not discuss their work in the public forums or refer to readings and submissions by client name. Personally I don't release any client name ever - not even for referrals to obtain more work. Other editors do release client names upon request for new clients considering them - and that is okay if the first client is aware such may happen. But, again, never make comments in a public forum of any kind about any client manuscript or submissions if it bears any form of their identification, (i.e. Author names, pen names, screen names.)
An editor's name may never appear in a published work. It might, but don't anticipate that it will be there. Out of hundreds of manuscripts and books I have worked on I think my name has been put into print once. Don't be doing editing if you are looking to see your name in print. To get your name in print be the author or the illustrator.
How about advice for budding composers?
Daniel: I am primarily a classical composer which sounds different than a song writer. Yet, they both are the same in that they each are creating an expression via music. Composers are authors as authors are artists and artists are composers. We are creators of expression. I've always felt that I was making something tangible out of nothing. Just as with authors, you must keep doing it. Learn your craft and continue to improve it. There are means to garner exposure for your works. Such exposure is heavy on your time and effort but the pleasure of hearing somebody say, "I like that piece of music," is overwhelming.
Thank you so very much for sharing your time with us. As a writer myself, I know how time consuming these things can be. I would like to wish you the greatest of success. Is there anything else you would like to share with us?
Daniel: Rob, I am honored that anybody has an interest in my views so the thanks are all mine. If any of your readers need to talk with me you can have them email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or they can catch me on Twitter as @jesterhay
Here are some helpful links to Daniel’s sites of interests, and should you use Twitter it would be in your best interests to follow Daniel and get to know him. If you see him on Twitter, give him thanks again for sharing his time with us. Until next time, write on!
Daniel J Hay - Composer https://sites.google.com/site/danielhaycomposer/
Daniel J Hay - Editor https://sites.google.com/site/danielhayeditor/
My Blog -- PeriODDically... http://haydanielhay.blogspot.com a periodic link to my universe.
This year has been fairly exciting in the world of books to movies. There have been several titles this year that have gone to the big screen. Below is a list of just a few:
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Based on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling
Based on The Help by Kathryn Stockett
I Am Number Four
Based on I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
The Lincoln Lawyer
Based on The Lincoln Lawyer by Michael Connelly
One for the Money
Based on One for the Money by Janet Evanovich
Based on Priest (comics/graphic novels) by Min-Woo Hyung
Based on The Rite by Matt Baglio
Water for Elephants
Based on Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
UPDATE NOTE: There has been some turn for author Kathryn Stockett found HERE, which may or may not delay movie.
Come back again soon when I take a long look at comic books and graphic novels in the movies.
Many of my readers my have already read Good e Reader post by Mercy Pilkington here. It was a very informative interview I had done with her. As a graphic comic book publisher and graphic novelist, I had not even considered what might come of my work if I try to ePublish.
The interview sparked some curiosity in the subject and I started to do my own investigative work, as any ePublisher should do anyway. What Mercy and I both found was that there really are no venues for graphic novels, even though you can purchase some using current technologies, those novels are usually not rendered correctly which takes away from their appeal and leaves them unread and many others, not purchased by those who use eReaders.
There is a huge market untapped out there for this type of reading material, and it has generally been avoided by most companies who see graphic novels as comic books. I for one remember reading Piers Anthony On a Pale Horse, Moby Dick, Walking Dead and a few others via Graphic Novels. There are far too many applications of the Graphic Novel left unexplored and eReaders are contributing to their impediment.
Many new stories as well as some classics could go unnoticed by readers who can't get them on their eReaders and many more will go unpublished due to the extreme cost of conventional publishing for graphic novels. Which by the way, is about four times the amount of a regular novel due to the graphics.
Check out Mercy's and comment, like and repost to facebook, twitter or what ever your social media might be. The word must get out, and if enough people join in, this could change the way eReaders view Graphic Novels in the future.
Last post we talked about carding your book before you write. Getting all your ducks in a row so to speak, this post is to compliment that one with more great electronic tools that could help you achieve more, in less time and with less head ache.
Today's tool is called ActionOutline. It's a software program created by a writer, for writers. It makes all your ideas and sets them in a tree format allowing you to plot an entire story, characters, subplots, and "card" them out without using index cards.
The program has two versions. A free version which limits you to seven subheadings per heading and you can't export to other formats. The pro version (paid version) does not have those limits. The free version has no time limit even though they do not advertise that fact.
Check out the tool here ACTIONOUTLINE.
Ok you have a great story idea, with intriguing characters and exciting plot, but you have a hard time putting those things down on paper… Now what?
Well I can help you there. What I do is I keep a pad of paper and a pen with me at all times just in case I come up with some great ideas, I can jot them down. This is a good starting point. What you do is jot down things that you want to make happen in your story. Don’t worry about what comes first and so on. Just jot them down quickly. It don’t matter how many there are, and it don’t matter if they seems stupid at some point, just write them down. And they do not have to be full details of everything that is happening in that particular scene or chapter either. Just enough to get the idea down. Example: John tells Libby how much he loves her, just before he sacrifices himself to save her. That is enough to get started, you flesh it out when you actually write it.
Next get you some index cards. Standard 5x7 cards is great. Jot down your ideas. One Idea per card. This can be even shorter descriptions. From the example above: John Sacrifices Self. Would be enough to tell what’s happening in this particular scene or chapter.
After all your ideas are on cards, lay them out on a table or on the floor if there are too many for a table. Don’t use a bed, because as soon as you move you will jostle the cards around and this is not good. What you want to do is put the cards in order as they should happen in your book. This again is not in stone and can be moved around as the story goes. Once you have them in order, number then so that they can stay that way.
Ok, now is the fun part. Get that pad of paper out again and write a one page description of that particular scene or chapter. Just one page, no more. Do them in order and get them as detailed as you can in one page.
Now you have the basis of your story, put those into what ever word processor you use and flesh each out as you go, tying them together with facts and actions that would flow in your story. Again this is not in stone yet, you can move chapters and scenes around as you see fit.
Once you move them around, and start fleshing them out, guess what? That’s right, you are writing your book at this point. You will save yourself a lot of work, and heartache by taking these simple steps first, before you start to actually write your book.
Hope this helps everyone! Till next time from the Writer’s Block… keep writing!