Comment to 'New to Planning'
Comment to New to Planning
  • Some great advice here from the troops in the trenches.

    Rick’s ‘shuffling’ (despite his remark about my mixers – I suspect he takes his whiskey straight), reminded me of the feeling of learning to plot/plan. You shuffle many concepts, and then you find yourself with a ‘murder card’ in this hand, a ‘strong-female-character card’ in the other hand, and a ‘POV-misbelief card’ in… wait – time for Blu-Tack -- and a bunch of cards stuck to your bedroom wall.

    It helps to reduce all the (most relevant) advice into your own checklists: Chapter planning checklist, editing checklist, character tics checklist, and so on – whatever stops the little blighters running around your head. Then, when you need to be you writer self, tell your planner self you’ll go through the checklists with them later. Fortunately, we are no longer writing in stone so we don’t have to get it all right first chisel.

    And, the fact that you care enough for it to bother you is probably a good sign.

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    • I taste bitter an order of magnitude more intensely than others do.

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      • That is fascinating. It reminds me of the woman who could see in ultra-violet and only found out she saw the world differently to other people by accident. And this is not entirely off topic, because it is different levels of activity in the different areas of our brains which mean that one writer will struggle with plotting while another will find plotting easy but struggle with inventing characters.

        The good news is when it comes to the skills required for writing, the brain can restructure itself. It would be interesting to see the scans of how a brain changes (which areas become more active) as someone becomes a more and more proficient writer.

        But as just one session of brain scans cost $3,500, I doubt any aspiring writer could afford it.

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        • When I've got a couple million to spare…

          But different brain structures is something I've been harping on about for ages. Specifically when people go on about the need to show emotion in one's writing: the claim that everyone (or even the majority) experience and manifest emotion the same way. The truth (proven through loads of experiments) is that people are terrible at reading other's emotions. The chance of correctly guessing how someone if feeling, purely from body language, is 25%; that can rise to 33% if you know the person you are assessing very well.

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