Last week I mentioned I had a plot for my tenth NaNo (a teenager, a space ship, a memory storage device, and a fight for the throne). The more I think about this plot, the more I look forward to writing starting November first.
I love the early days of exploring a plot. The time after you have a general idea, but you don’t yet have the entire timeline worked out. In this case I was lucky enough to have a first scene pop into my head and play like a movie. I know what is important about the scene and how each of the characters will behave in it. A few days ago that first scene became the second scene as I solved part of the ‘how to avoid an info dump’ issue. The new first scene brought in a new character. Her creation sparked four other characters, two of whom will probably follow the characters off world eventually.
Each new discovery adds complexity and interest to what started as four simple items on a list. I only have the first third of the novel worked out. Basically I know what happens until the characters get off their initial planet. After that I know there will be adventures and trials, but I’m not sure what they are. For now I’m waiting for that next lightening bolt moment that will start to bring it all to shape the same way the early scenes have taken shape.
With Scriveners new iOS version I’m trying something a little different as I develop my plot. Usually I make my notes in a notebook or two (or on whatever scrap paper I can find). Then when I need the ‘final’ timeline before I start writing I scramble to pull all my notes together. With scrivener on my iPad I can expand my plot through the corkboard even while sitting on the bus, or waiting in a doctors office. I’m still using a notebook to store random thoughts, or pieces that don’t fit into the main timeline yet. But I think I’ll have a lot less scrambling at the end as things come together.
How to you expand on your initial plot ideas once they come to you? Are you getting ready for NaNo yet?