Info dumps

After copying the first nine chapters of my book into Scrivener, I went back and reread my opening scene. I rewrote it a while back. I remember being pleased with the language and the imagery.

What was I on?

The words may have been good, but there were too many of them. I’d managed to cut out most of the exposition (or I thought I had), but what I’d failed to realise is that the whole scene was one big info dump.

What was my characters goal? What stops her from achieving it?

I know what I had planned for her, but it was getting lost in the verbiage. I went back and rewrote the whole scene. Eight large paragraphs became eleven tiny ones. I made the language punchier, and the protagonist more interesting.

The opening page needs to pull the reader into the narrative immediately. Sometimes it’s better to take a step back and look at the scene as a whole. Is it doing its job, or is it just a page of pretty writing?

What’s your mission statement?

I’ve just read a great post on creating your mission statement. I considered mission statements to be more of a business thing than something an author needed to worry about, but after reading the blog post I understand why it’s so important.

Without a clear vision of what you are trying to achieve, writing can become something that you always play around with, but you never quite get anywhere. Coming up with a mission statement using the five questions mentioned in the blog post could help give structure to a writer’s career.

Where do you write?

I love seeing how other writers set up their writing spaces. Do they cope with a laptop on the kitchen table? Or are they surrounded by a sea of books?

I don’t know why it’s so interesting – reading about other writers habits, seeing how they organise themselves – it just is.

These sites all have where I write sections. Leave a comment if you know of any others!

The Barnes & Noble Book Blog

Novelicious

The Guardian

Writing.ie