Monday, September 7, 2009

Productive Weekend

I love three day writing weekends at home! I got a lot done this weekend, including:

1) I started my East of Yesterday Gazetteer. I do one of these for every novel I write. I use TiddlyWiki for my gazetteer, which, despite its odd name, is a wonderful tool. Look at the sort of connections I can build using this wiki:

    Each hyperlink opens to another wiki topic. Building these wikis are a breeze, and the software has grown to the extent that it doesn't take a long time to learn it. Things like the bullets are intuitive - just use an asterisk when you enter the info and the software converts it to a bullet. It works especially well with FireFox. Want to try it? Here's the TiddlyWiki website.

    It also helps me think of connections between characters. Sammy Jones, one of the employees in the above example, is quite a bad character who sprang wholly formed after I wrote the entry for his father, the Reverend Oscar Jones. Sammy is a driver and a thug for Felix the gangster. You can just imagine the conflict. And what of Dorothy Latham? Exactly what is she doing to work her late husband's debt off for a gangster? Even I'm not sure yet.

    2) I organized my various POVs. This is the first novel I've written in many years where I have more than one points-of-view. Oath of the Songsmith, the novel of which I never speak, had multiple viewpoints, including the various villains. Forging a Legend originally had three, but I cut it down to two by rewriting all of Thesk's points of view. Starcaster had one. East of Yesterday has at least three, possibly four. Plus, EOD does more POV switching than any novel since OATS. I had a terrible time keeping track of POVs with OATS, so I created another Word Style called "POV". Now, they all appear nicely in my Document Map along with all my other stuff. What am I talking about? Refresh your memory by reading my primer to the Document Map here.

    3) And lastly, I wrote another 5000 words, cut 2000 words for a net increase of 3000 words (just in case you can't add), for a grand total of just over 20,000 words! Plus, I do believe I have already gotten through my mid-novel slump! I might be due another one, because I'm shooting for at least 100,000 words. But we'll see.

    And that was all on the weekend! It made up for a rather unproductive week.


    1. Hurray! I love hearing about good writing days (or weekends). You've intrigued me with the Wiki for your novels, too. I've missed your previous posts about that--I'll have to check it out!


    2. Thanks, Robin!

      Cheryl, I'm not sure what I've said about it here, but you have inspired me to do a full review of TiddlyWiki--from a writer's point-of-view.

    3. That does sound like a productive weekend, and a neat tool, too. I hope your novel is continuing to come along well. {Smile}


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