As a member of the Romance Writers Organisation of South Africa I am proud to share our latest initiative – Romance Novel Writing Month.
I’ve been extensively involved in getting it going and am excited to announce that we will be launching on 1 March 2018. There are still some teething problems to sorted out but what new project doesn’t have them, right? Leading up to the actual event though, in February the plotters among us get an opportunity to plan out our project and we’ve decided to call it Planuary. 😉 For all the panters out there, you are most welcome to join in Planuary (planning February) too.
Since I am firmly in the plotter camp I usually do this for any writing project I tackle, with the exception of one or two really short short stories. These are the 3 steps I generally use to set me up for writing.
1. Create a story file
Generally I’ll start a new notebook (yeah, I’m old-school like that) for each project to keep all my thoughts, ideas and planning together in one place. I prefer A5 as it’s easy enough to carry around in my handbag so I can add anything that pops into my head while I’m out and about. You could always use an app on your phone if you prefer using more 21st century technology. 😁
2. Character mapping
I like to create a solid “picture” in my mind of my characters so I’ll do a character profile on each character both main and secondary, using a character mapping worksheet I downloaded from Kristen Martin’s website. (Hot tip: I follow her YouTube channel for some great writing tips and advice)
Once I “know” who my characters are, I’ll then go on to plot my story and outline my scenes. I use sticky notes, even in my notebook, so that if I decide to move a scene I can easily rearrange the sticky notes instead of having to scratch out notes, which just becomes ugly and untidy (sorry – that’s the perfectionist in me speaking 😁).
I am currently working on a story to submit for a contest (hence the future reveal stickers 😉) so since we’ll be doing both a Pro and Lite version, I’ll be able to continue this project I’ve already started (as part of the Lite version).
All will be revealed very soon. In the meantime, I really do hope you’ll join us for our very first Romance Novel Writing Month. Keep an eye out for more details about the blog site we’ll be launching for it very shortly.