Craft, Novel, Writing

How is it Friday already?

Time passes quickly when you have a migraine—not. I missed out on half of Wednesday and Thursday, so it doesn’t seem like this should be the end of the week. I wrote exactly one paragraph on Wednesday, but I managed over a thousand words yesterday. I’m trying for the record on slowest written first draft ever.

structureBy word count, I’ve worked past the midpoint now, so that’s something. Actually, I’m about to go back and pick up a dropped thread and weave it through to the midpoint, so when I do that, I think I’ll be adding at least two thousand words more.

Structure is not my strong point, so I’m not always sure where I am storywise. All my attempts at rigidly pre-structuring fail. I have to write the story as it comes to me and shape it up later. Sort of like moving all your stuff in the new house and then deciding where things fit best. I have to actually see the furniture in place before I know what arrangement works.

But I do have guidelines on novel structure, which I consider from time to time as I write. One is a six-point “frame” from Anne Greenwood Brown at Writer Unboxed. Another is Nigel Watt’s 8-point Story Arc shared by Ali Hale at Daily Writing Tips.

These structure guides will come more into play during editing, but even then, I’ll probably modify them to best fit my story. They are only guides, after all.

Your turn: Do you have a favorite novel structure guide?