You want to write a novel, but you don’t know how to start. You have all these ideas milling around in your head, but you can’t seem to organize them. What do you do? Write them down. Get a journal and write it in there, or create an electronic file in your word processing program and write it in there.
What do you do once you get your ideas written down and organized? This is where I say, it all depends on how you as an individual go about it? Everyone is different and will do what is comfortable for them. But what if you don’t know how you work? You are going to have to try different things and discover what way you like best.
Here’s what I do. When I finished my first novel, I immediately wanted to write the second one. I had an idea of what I wanted the second book to be about but most of it was bunched in my head in pieces. I knew what I wanted the story to consist of but I didn’t know what I needed to do to connect those ideas. I started out by putting together a three ring binder with sections. These sections are as follows: characters, realms, settings, photos, names for characters, questions, story, style sheet, and fantasy characters.
I went through each section of my binder and added my notes in each section. Once the information was separate this way, my mind was free to meditate on each. The one section I started with was questions. I looked at those and sought to answer them. No, the answers didn’t come right away. I brainstormed the answers and some questions I had to really think about. This is where my walks came in handy. During that time my brain was free to think. Much of what I came up with and worked for my story came from that thinking time during my walks.
Example: below is a question I needed an answer to for my up and coming novel The Cross’s Key. I wanted seven realms in my novel hence the double question below…..
What will these realms be and how will I connect them to the story?
The answer to the above questions did not come right away. It took a while. That’s ok. Don’t rush your story. Take your time. But…..write down your ideas.