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How to Advance Your Plot with Careful Scene Design ~ 5 Steps

Plotting is complex, and whether you “wing it” or plot extensively, there are 5 key steps that will help you stay on track when brainstorming a scene. I’m reprinting a blog post I wrote a few years back to bring attention to these basic steps all novelists should consider when putting a scene together.

Writing scenes can be daunting, but, as with all novel components, it just takes time and effort to learn how to become a master scene crafter. The first step is getting the big picture of a scene.

What do I mean by that? Instead of thinking about the minute details you want to put in a scene, you first want to step back and consider a few things.

The Point

Each scene in your novel should be moving the plot forward. Each scene should reveal some new information, but not just anything—the information needs to help move the plot forward. The bottom line? Every scene must have a point to it or it shouldn’t be in your novel.

If you’ve been following my blog for some time, or you’ve read my writing craft books in The Writer’s Toolbox series, you’ve heard me spout this. When brainstorming your scene ideas, it’s crucial that you first consider the point of your scene. Continue Reading…

Half Off Writing Boot Camps ~ South Lake Tahoe, California

For the last five years, I’ve been teaching writing retreats in gorgeous South Lake Tahoe, CA. And each year I keep expanding. New retreats. More instuctors. More instruction!

My co-instructor, Catharine Bramkamp, and I offering writers a very special limited-time offer:

If you come to either two or all three of our Tahoe boot camps this fall, and you sign up before January 31, you will get HALF OFF your boot camp cost.

While every house we’ve rented has been drop-dead gorgeous, we’ve had our eye on this property for some years. In order to rent it, we need to get writers on board ASAP to commit to coming so we can pay for the house and lock it in. Continue Reading…

Why You Need A Book Bible and How to Start One

Today’s guest post is by Natasha D. Lane.

Writing is often seen as a sudden burst of creativity. The muses appear on our shoulders, whispering inspiration in our ears. Our artistic souls are charged and our fingers move across the keyboard with an urgent ease.

Though the poetic image of a carefree writer typing out masterpieces may be appealing, it’s not realistic. If you’ve been writing for a while, you’ll know the scene I described above is not how writing works. Writing, like many arts, is a process that requires patience, discipline, and organization which is where a book bible comes in handy.

What Is A Book Bible?

A book bible is a document that contains all significant information related to a book or a book series. There aren’t any hard and fast rules to building your bible. However, it should be written in a way that finding specific information is easy. If a reader were to get their hands on your bible and read through it, they should understand how your entire book/series plays out. Continue Reading…

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