What’s New, Mathew?

[TL;DR clickthrough]

Glad you asked, Mathew. I’m working on No Gods But Us.

Didn’t you start that a while ago?

Yes, for NaNoWriMo 2015! And I wrote a few hundred tentative words of prologue!

So many?

Yep.

Impressive.

I know. But here’s the cool thing: I haven’t stopping thinking about Elegy for Halcyon Chimera since.

So, not new, but progress, at long last?

Mmm. Lots of things going on in my world right now. Very busy with adjusting to a number of things, including coming to grips with some facts regarding my most productive writing routines.

Your routines?

Right, the things I do while writing. I’ve been doing some introspection. It’s been helpful, to say the least. I feel good.

So, then blogging is productive?

Not in and of itself, but blogging lets people know I’m not dead. And knowing I’m around is important for my future plans. Like letting people take a peek at No Gods But Us

So, not dead, and experiencing epiphanies?

Something like that. Mainly realizing that I do my very best actual writing after I’ve clearly laid out my story.

You need to avoid Pantsing?

For my long form work, absolutely. But I work well on shorts (like my Dire Calls series) when I’ve got some solid outlining done as well. The works I’ve done the best with have all been as a Plotter.

Doesn’t that strike you as weird though? I mean, your personality…

Yeah. I don’t strike me as a Plotter either. Why do you think it’s been so difficult for me to come to grips with? All the improv leanings in the world apparently don’t make for a Pantser born…

But I’ve seen your Pantsing work…it’s pretty good stuff, if we do say so ourselves.

Thanks, me. But you see, while the story comes out when I go full Pantser, it’s not got the precision I need. Plus, it gets worse the longer a work is. So for an epic like Elegy for Halcyon Chimera…yikes.

Fix it in post!

Ha.

But isn’t that what rewrites and editing are all about?

Yes. Absolutely. You can pick through the raw material, the first draft, and you can tie everything together. But I’ve found that I don’t do that. I don’t work well untangling the threads when they’re just thrown out there in the first place. So things aren’t sharp.

But that stream-of-consciousness stuff is good…

Yes, absolutely! But I’ve figured out that I can still benefit from my strength there in two ways, while maintaining that Plotter framework: 1) by brainstorming a hell of a lot during the very first stages of story generation, long before I even know what the story is really about; and 2) by understanding what I’m doing across the entire arc of a story, down to the scene-by-scene goals, and allowing myself to rapidly progress through those beats, scenes, and chapters by hitting waypoints.

Huh. Seems you’ve thought on this a lot.

Yep. Meditated on it, you might say.

(Me means napping, I’m sure of it.) *cough* So why are you here?

I told…

Yeah, yeah. Not dead. I meant why are you still here? Wrap it up! You’ve got to go Plot.

Right. Ok, so:

  • I’m not dead.
  • I’m working on No Gods But Us—and the rest of Elegy for Halcyon Chimera as well.
  • If you’re interested in some of what I’m working with during this process, you can check out Story Grid.
  • More interesting stuff (sneak peek, like) is coming as soon as I get into the actual words-on-the-page writing process.

And the other thing…

Ah, right. I have something big planned that I’ll need your (readers and fellow authors alike) help with, so please, keep it in the back of your mind that there’s something on the horizon!

Outta here, you.

I’m going! Back to the Plotting! Updates coming soon!

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