Methods of Writing

Explored few methods that would be of use to budding writers and authors. This was one of the agenda covered during the “Writer to Author – The Transition” event.
1) Snowflake Method
The age-old method, but powerful. The most debated as well, so just a gist of it here.
  • Write the Soul of the story in one line.
  • Build 10 or more sentences that covers the major events of the story and completes the whole novel
  • From each sentence, start building chapters – End of this, you will have your chapters ready
  • Prologue, Epilogue and few parts more according to your thoughts will have your first draft
2) Sticky note Method
This method can be used by those who write thrillers, murder mysteries, or a novel based on events.
  •  Start writing the bits of incidents on a sticky note
  •  Now that you have scenes ready start sketching the story and place the events as and when required
  •  Timeline throughout and ensure if they fall in place, else change the sticky notes as per preferences
  •  If you think of a better event – replace the sticky note
Keep some sticky notes with you always and pen down events whenever an idea strikes, you’ll never know when a good idea would strike
3) Reverse Engineering Method
Let’s go backward for a change – trust me, this method works best for your second novel. The first novel is an experience, and hence every step you take with your second will be much better once such is this reverse engineering.
  •  Start writing your climax first
  •  You can now start the bits that would lead to this climax
  • This method can be used when you have the Climax in mind but have few options left in mind to route it. When you reverse the process, the climax will help you judge the best of the ‘Tunneled options’ in mind.
  •  Keep writing the other chapters in which you have clarity and this would assist in directing to the climax. The best of the lot that makes sense will find its way.
4) Shadow Method
The method I followed for “I don’t wear Sunscreen” my first novella. Write the parts where you have enough clarity, and pass over the chapters to a critic/friend who will slap your face with questions. Start answering the questions with twists with the following chapters, this way you can keep off from surprising loopholes and dramatic scenes that has no essence.
For Example: I had a strong character in the story, for which my friend questioned what makes a person from a mediocre family and such a locality turn so strong, I need a reason for it. From there I weaved a background that worked well in the novel and convinced the readers.
5) Paper-clip method
In this method, you don’t outline the novel at all. You won’t have the genre in mind or the sequence, but just a few scenes or portions. Write them all in a paper and clip them, and then outline. This helps you to broaden and spread out from ordinary outlining methods or restrict yourself from writing within the criteria.
  •  Start with Place and Time of events
  •  PoV
  •  About protagonist
  •  Few scenes
From here, start clipping.
6) Answer the Big Six:
  • Who|What|Where|When|Why|How
Answering these will help you keep an eye on the possible loopholes and define every step of your novel. It gives more clarity to you and your readers. You exclude the ambiguity and timelines would back you up throughout without a miss
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25 thoughts on “Methods of Writing”

  1. Not an author, but I read a lot about the writing craft. Some of these methods are new to me, and some I have heard of, like the – sticky note, and reverse engineering method.I am sure many would find this helpful.

    Like

  2. I think an author should follow her instincts, and build a solid plot gradually. Consider possibilities when you came to a pass. I didn’t know how I was going to end my story until I came to the last phase. There were many possibilities, each having its own merits and demerits. I chose what I thought was the best, and logical, way to end the story. It worked for a lot of people.
    (Don’t look at the last page of my book…it will spoil the fun).
    Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

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