Monday, August 15, 2011

How to tell a story

Writing a book involves several emotions.

Happiness from the first page.

Anger at the second.

Heartbreaking when you hit the wall.

Perserverence when you pass the wall.

Triumph (complete with cookies) when you finish the novel.

Everyone has a story to tell, it's all in how you start, it's all in how you feel. It's all in how you push yourself to the finish line.

So... how do you tell a story?

23 comments:

Creepy Query Girl said...

I never start quite at the beginning, I like a slow build up and few surprises and I'm a sucker for happy endings:)

Anna Banks said...

It starts with a playlist, then turns into a bunch of mangled scenes that I'll somehow have to weld together and make sense of. Then it's scrawled on a notepad with an ink pen or eyeliner or whatever else is available at that moment of brilliance. Then it's transfered to the computer one morning after a sleepless night of plotting. Oh, and coffee. Coffee is involved...

Anna Banks said...

And all the while I'm irritated that I can't type faster.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

For me, it starts with running. That's where all my ideas get sorted out. :D

Dominique said...

I start with maniacal laughter, progress to giggles, then to a hiss, then to more laughter, and end on a happy dance. On the good days anyway.

Laura Pauling said...

I have a beginning, middle, and end! :)

Rebecca Bradley said...

It's funny that I'm reading this today as I'm feeling frustrated and headachey with the whole thing. I'm second drafting and trying to work my way around a massive plot hole I found in the first read through. It's such an emotional journey and one I hope I will be able to get used to because the good day feelings are amazing.

julie fedderson said...

Most times I start with one scene that I love. Then I build around it. Can't think linear to save my life.

Abby said...

I'm trying hard not to be a pantser and trying to plot things out (at least a little.) It has trigger lots of different emotions in the reader with lots of surprising twists and turns and hopefully triumph at the end of the story. :)

Deana said...

Apparently very slowly:)

I actually plot it out then start from the beginning to end. I am always envious of those who can pick it up wherever in the story. I am just too weird for that I guess.

Tiffany Garner said...

I start writing my books from chapter one, but I never really start at the 'beginning' of the story. I tend to start in media res. I don't really know why this is--it's just always been the natural way for me to start story.

Danyelle L. said...

I can't start a story until the character shows up and start talking. Once he'/she does that, I just listen and type. :)

Cynthia Lee said...

I usually have a scene or setting in my head so I start writing something, anything to see what's going to happen next.

Kathryn said...

I've never had the "characters talk to me" phenomenon so many other writers have. I get a small spark of an idea that I try to build from. Then I put on music and start to outline... sigh... how wonderful it all is.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I usually spend the first few pages in frustration until I find my groove.

E.R. King said...

I like your idea of what makes a good book. For me it's: opposition, love, growth, and resolution. This combo wins every time.

Kathryn Elliott said...

For me, one crazy character sparks the story and the plot weaves in around him/her.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

I get stuck at the starting line. I hate "starting" a new project. Once I get going, I'm fine, but getting going is tough for me. :-)

Nicki Elson said...

I've found out that I need to write for at least half an hour straight before anything good comes of it, so to ease frustration, I only tweak during short windows, write during the long windows, and daydream in between. ;)

Sarah Ahiers (Falen) said...

i also typically have despair at some point, when i hit that moment of "omg, i'm the worst writer EVAH and why am i even bothering?!"
god i hate those moments

Ashley Stone said...

I hope one day to tell my story! I keep trying and hitting a wall. ; )

Clare C. Greenstreet said...

Tears when I finish a novel. I hate endings, even if you can go back and relive the story again. I don't believe in happy endings, just bittersweet ones.

Richard said...

I have been writing my "war stories" from the courtroom, each of which deals with a different criminal case, or criminal investigation, which I handled as a state and federal prosecutor. As I tell each story, I try to focus on the obstacles I faced, how I overcame them, and lessons I learned. I thoroughly enjoy your blog and all the helpful tips and information from you and your readers!