I’ve been feeling lately like I’ve blogged about everything on the subject of writing. However, I still get lots of e-mail all the time on all sorts of questions, many of which I think would be of interest to my loyal blog readers. But I’m too busy answering e-mail to have time to blog, and I’ve been hesitant to answer e-mail on a public blog without asking permission.
So it struck me today that maybe I should ask you all for your questions on writing. What’s a burning issue for you? What do you need to know in order to move forward in your writing?
Post your question on my “Ask a Question For My Blog” page and I’ll answer you right here on this blog. That way, I’ll know for sure that I’m blogging about things that matter to you, and you’ll be asking a question that will benefit all my blog readers. Everybody wins that way. You’ll just need to check the little check-box that gives me permission to answer you in public.
If you include a link to your web site or blog, I’ll even include your link in my answer, which will give you a bit of link glory.
Of course, you can always ask me private questions on my Contact page on this web site. But if it’s a question that can possibly be answered in public, then please do so and I’ll give you a bit of fame to go along with my answer.
Melissa Stroh says
I’ve read that for a historical fiction author, it’s ideal to do some on-site research as well as documentary. While I agree with this, for some people like me, it’s just not financially feasible. So what do you think would be the next best thing to do in that case? Especially when you want to add depth and authenticity to your story’s geographical landscape?
Lois Hudson says
I have been developing plot lines for several novels that I envisioned as stand-alones; however, current advice recommends series proposals. The only thing that might connect my stories besides the era (pre- and post-WWII) is the possibility of placing them all in one town. That was not my original intention–even had mapped out the towns in which they take place. Now I’m almost overwhelmed in planning out the way the stories might overlap if I move the characters into the one town. Then I must insert mention of the characters in the current WIP which is already 12 chapters going. Any recommendations on laying it out? I think I need a huge grid of dates, plot lines, where the characters can intersect, etc. It has me frozen. Thanks for the Q&A options.
Sheila Deeth says
What a neat idea. Of course, when you ask me to ask a question I suddenly run out of things to ask, but I’ll plan to be back.
Frank Connolly says
Two technical questions re presentation of work.
1. Should you leave two spaces after fullstop?
2. Should you leave double space after paragraph?
I’m also interested to see an answer to Frank Connolly’s first question. I always use double space, but my free lance editor only seems to use a single space.
I have no other technical question, but I wait in anticipation of your next storyline help.
I’ve already written my synopsis and three-act-structure with the help of your Dummies book (Thanks!), and after a week or so I’ll be ready to start looking for an agent/publisher!
Ric Gerace says
Have you collected some of the ways people implement the Snowflake method? Besides, of course, your Snowflake Pro, which even at the great half-off price I can’t afford (I Kindled the book though). I’m looking at putting together a system involving OneNote, Excel, and Word. I can see it being done in Personal Brain, or in one of the better journal programs, like The Journal. The real techies might put it in Access. It would be interesting to see how people work the Snowflake system. (On the other hand, putting that out there might cut into your software sales… oops!) 🙂
Randy sez: I did the Snowflakes for all my early novels using Microsoft Word and Excel (for the scene lists). It worked pretty well, but I found the character charts in particular to be a hassle in Word. Scene lists work fairly well in Excel, but I found that many people simply couldn’t learn the basics of spreadsheets well enough to use it effectively. That’s when I realized that a tightly integrated software product could really fill a need. Snowflake Pro has been tremendously successful, and I don’t worry at all about whether people use some other method of working through the Snowflake process. My first goal is to teach the craft of fiction writing; I’ve always believed that if I just do that well, the money will come.
Ric Gerace says
No question your program is valuable, at least from what I’ve seen of it and thought about it. But if you ever do find the time, posting how people work, using various software and combinations of software, might be interesting and useful. But that’s just my geeky side speaking. And thanks for all the good info you provide on writing.