I find the way in which different author’s plan and navigate the path of writing a ‘novel’ a fascinating labyrinth. I myself am a obsessive planner, which mirrors in many ways my personal life—I love structure, being ill means I crave to have control, and I enjoy having that in my author-ship as well.
I doubt there is anything wrong with that. I just like having plans.
One of the things I have found myself doing over the years in writing books is always having the first five chapters as the ‘set-up’ chapters. The first chapter will always be the introduction to the main-plot, the main-character/characters and will set up the tone of the world, the story and so-on-and-so forth. After that, the four other chapters will continue in that manner.
It’s usually always five chapters. I give myself five chapters to introduce the world.
But I always make sure the main-plot and the main character is right off the gun, like a bullet. That first chapter is so important. When I read a book, if the first couple pages loose me, I’ll be like…meh…if the first chapter doesn’t do it, I’ll be even more worried, if the first five chapters are wearing thin, then I’m really likely the put the book down unless I’m so madly in love with a character that I’ll force myself to read onward through something that doesn’t have reason for existing yet. This could also be that the story just doesn’t grab me in the first beginning chapters, and that’s a fair point. So I always try to make sure that there is a little something in the five beginning chapters that different readers ‘might’ enjoy. At least I hope.
Why I’ve developed this way of planning/writing I don’t know, but it seems to work for me at the moment and I grow and learn with each book I write and each book I read and the editors I talk to and the writers I talk to.
Having a mind welcome to always learning new techniques knowing you can improve, makes writing so much easier I find. I know I am never going to be perfect, that’s a fact, but I do want to share my stories and imagination with others, and I hope that by trying to learn more, trying to better myself, I can find ways to bring worlds to life for others to enjoy.
If you’re writing your own work, how do you go about beginning something? Hopefully you don’t spend countless hours utterly fixated on how spiders walk…cause yeah…I did that XD