Writing my non-fiction book “Kitchen Survival” is not hard in the slightest, and is going on just great. I have read multiple times from different writers that non-ficiton and fiction utilizes two different sides of the brain and therefore very different in the writing process. So “how to start” for me, isn’t at all related to non-fiction. I know how to teach, and writing about things I know is not hard in the slightest.
It was in the adventure of writing the Kitchen Survival book that I found myself thinking about fiction. I guess after ten thousand words you start realizing you could write about anything. Heck, I was a damn good story teller when I was younger, and I do have a creative mind. I really doubt the ability to write a good read is NOT part of my brain wave. I should be able to do this just fine.
Well, how do I start?
I remember school and what I learned there, especially college. I learned a crap load about writing, and a couple classes about creative writing. They were intense, but I remember being able to master it very quickly, and the professor being super awesome and supportive of me.
Still, where do I start, now?
I had an idea, that was inspired by a video game, which included the protaganaist waking up in a mourge , naked and clearly marked for dead, spending the rest of the book trying to figure out what happened while being tricked by the antagonist . I ended up dropping this idea on one condition , I can not drop the next idea.
I dropped it because I had two major issues, the first mainly being that I was being inspired by a twenty five year old video game, which after some research , I learned was loosly based off of a book “Never Deal with a Dragon” written by the co-author of the gaming system itself. There was never any romance in this book, and I was planning on it, but the second major issue was I felt I was trying to plan the book to much which was counter-intuitive to what I expected I need to do in order to start writing it. After the outline was done, my soul was litterally crushed, and I didn’t want to finish it. I came up with the first excuse and the second was that I was writing the story from a mid point instead of the begining, and I should have outlined it from the begining and then wrote it obviously from the midpoint again….. but it never happened.
Why did outlining kill my momentum? I mean, when I created worlds and storys for Dungeons and Dragons campaigns, story building was just like outlining …. at least I thought.
Stephen King once said “I think a writers notebook is a great place for good ideas to die” ….. “the best ideas are the ones that stick around for a long time” .
So I sat down, and wrote as many ideas as I could think of. Within seconds of writing an idea, I could see why an idea was crap….. but one has stuck with me. I don’t want to commit to it just yet, I want to get some more non fiction done, and then focus on some short story generation, and continue reading this book I just got “writing into the dark” by Dean Wesley Smith . It is about writing without outlining, and points out that writing without an outline allows the brain to do what it does when it reads.
I recently finished a book called “how to write using the Snowflake method” which is a method in where you write a small sentence synopses of your book, then a paragraph, then one page, and flush out your characters, and then your chapter synopses , and then finally your rough draft. Though this concept is super awesome and way up my alley ( overly analytical , super thourough etc,… ) , I have yet to put it to practice. I mean, just a simple outline crushed me already, I doubt this would be any different. This process involves a crap load of work in the outlining process as well, which leads me to believe it would crush my soul, than my spirit, than my heart, and might not ever look back to a writing career ever again.
I mean, writing into the dark is going to lead to some very horrible moments as well, and in essence will be just as wildly inefficient as the snowflake method.
I am actually on the fence about it, but the only thing making me think this is the way to go is a memory I had of being nine or ten years old, of writing a whole story out on tiny little post it stickers. I wasn’t just writing an outline to rearrange, I was writing a whole story. I wish I still had it, but I remember writing very tiny on a million of these post it notes, probably some five thousand words. for a ten year old, it was an epic.
In my music, I never plan it out. I piece it together. Sure, my music isn’t selling off of the shelves, or even at all….. but it is good and just like anything else, gets better with practice.