One step, two step, red step, blue step…
it takes steps to move forward.
Based on Around the Writer’s Block by Rosanne Bane, there are 6 stages in the creative process. Each step motivates the next step and so on. Each step is needed in building your Product Time. They don’t necessarily need to be in this exact order. We are all different and process ideas in our own way, just take them as categories and put them in the order that works best for you.
Speaking of steps, it is time for mine. You know what comes next. Dig out your copy, fill your cuppa with something refreshing, steal your neighbors’ scrummy nibbles (shhh…I won’t tell), and turn to page 67. Today we will be covering two stages: first insight and saturation.
First insight: this is the first glimmers of an idea. This is the big picture, holes and all. This is where you see what is missing or where problems could pop up.
• What do you do during this stage? Ask open-ended questions, free write, brainstorm, mind map, or whatever works best for you in the early stages of building a story.
What you have to understand is first sight is the discovery stage of your future story. Many writers can experience guilt during this stage because it feels like you aren’t accomplishing anything. You seem to be wandering through random youtube videos, reading articles on weird sites, or just asking yourself “what if” questions.
This is part of the process. You may feel like you are doing nothing, but you are building an idea and to do so you need fuel. You are looking for the lightning strike. Inspiration. This isn’t a quick stage. When you wander you don’t do so quickly. You stop at random points to smell the flowers or look closer at the tiny details. Don’t force it, just be there for it to strike. Give yourself permission to observe.
On page 72 there is an interest inventory. This is helpful for when you are having difficulty figuring out what you want to write about. Here are a few:
• Write about a passion you have
• Situations that outrage you
• Things you’ve always wondered about
• Things or people that caught your attention
*** One of the books I wrote, and will hopefully come out later this year, is based on a topic I found fascinating as a teen. I always wondered what they were and how it all worked- I wrote about Sin eaters. Find that topic that perks up your ears when you hear someone mention it. I had a professor tell me once that the best papers he read were the ones that the author was truly interested and invested in. Be interested and invested in your story. If you wouldn’t read it, why would I?
Saturation: This is my favorite stage. Research. Research. RESEARCH!!! Sorry, got a bit carried away there. It is time to make a pile of books, articles, sites to visit, videos and documentaries to watch, and people to talk to. **This is also the stage where you can observe people. People watching helps me build characters based on how people move and interact with others. Now- be careful not to freak people out during this part of your research. Don’t be a stalker. ** Okay- do anything that brings in data, on your topic of choice, to Product Time during the Saturation stage. This is where the internet can be your friend and worst enemy. Be careful when jumping from site to site. The internet can take you down a black hole of misinformation if you aren’t careful.
Once you have compiled a ton of information you are then required to weed through it and find what will and will not work. For some, this is an enjoyable step, to others…it is the very depths of hell. I am the former- if you hadn’t guessed.
Once you have sorted your finds, it helps to write out a list of questions and list where you found your answer. Then- figure out if it will work in your timeline. It couldn’t hurt to create a rough outline of the story’s flow. Knowing where the tale is going based on the information collected will make this a bit easier. Remember: you can change your fictional plot at any point. This is a world of your creation or destruction.
If you are enjoying our little journey through this awesome-sauce book, maybe you would like to check out Rosanne Bane’s blog below. I am doing my best, but of course, she will do it better.
Until next time…
Polish your sparkle and just keep twirling.
Find joy. Be joy. Enjoy.
I’m always looking for new friends! 😊
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