March 23, 2019, 12:57:59 PM

Author Topic: Book Planning  (Read 2227 times)

Offline Phoenix

Book Planning
« on: April 29, 2016, 02:17:21 PM »
So ive spent almost 2 years planning out my first book but I haven't even started writing it yet! Is this common? How long is a person supposed to take planning their book out?
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Offline Roelor

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2016, 02:19:42 PM »
I haven't planned out my plot yet, still I started writing it.

Offline Yora

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2016, 02:26:31 PM »
Common? I think so.Certainly not rare.
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Offline CameronJohnston

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2016, 02:32:15 PM »
It's very common indeed. It's also common for those novels to never get past the first few chapters (if begun at all). A lot of people get so carried away with details of world-building that they never get around to actually writing the story.

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Offline Roelor

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2016, 04:04:41 PM »
It's very common indeed. It's also common for those novels to never get past the first few chapters (if begun at all). A lot of people get so carried away with details of world-building that they never get around to actually writing the story.

This is why I just started writing eventhough Plot isn't completely done.
Also, I realized I wasted a lot of time on unrelated world aspects that with the plot I had in mind, would just become an info dump..

So I started writing what I knew I wanted to keep and meanwhile keep developing the plot and streamlining it.

Offline ScarletBea

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2016, 04:06:12 PM »
I don't know if it helps to get things in perspective, but I know I could plan a book really well, but I also absolutely know that I really couldn't write one.
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Offline SugoiMe

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2016, 04:33:24 PM »
I spent six or seven years slowly working on my world before I got to finishing a first draft. I think you're good. Try not to look at it as how long it's supposed to take and more on how long you want it to take. Every writer's journey is different.
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Offline Mr.J

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #7 on: April 29, 2016, 05:43:08 PM »
Blimey. I didn't plan at all for mine, just started writing from my idea, then I planned out the plot steps immediately when I liked it, and even then I didn't plan my outline all the way to the end, although I do know how it ends.

I think I would go mad if I planned and built for that long :P

Offline CryptofCthulhu

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #8 on: April 29, 2016, 09:34:54 PM »
You're asking a question that doesn't really have a concrete answer.

My advice? Start writing sooner rather than later. Outlining and brainstorming is fine but if that's all you do then you aren't exactly "writing".
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Offline Nora

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #9 on: April 29, 2016, 11:54:23 PM »
You're asking a question that doesn't really have a concrete answer.

My advice? Start writing sooner rather than later. Outlining and brainstorming is fine but if that's all you do then you aren't exactly "writing".

Agreed. With the footnote that, depending on your character, or how your book makes you feel, you might end up doing a lot of heavy edit to your plot and ideas as you write, or new world building details will spring up, etc.

I personally have 4 chapters mostly written, first draft wise, but 4 000 words of quotes, one liners, snippets of dialogue or informations on the world, plus pages and pages of mapped out plot and magic system outline.
These change as I spend time writing, so it's a self sustained system, which I think is great. And it would be amazing, if only I wrote more often :p
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Offline zmunkz

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2016, 02:34:47 AM »
When you say "planning" do you mean specifically world building?  Or do you mean planning the characters and the conflicts and the plot as well?

Both are common, for sure, but if you have only done world building to this point, I would encourage you to try and start on characters, or else you might have worldbuilder's disease, which can be an insidious illness that prevents your awesome stories from ever seeing the light of day.  The only cure is pushing on with plot and character :)

My first novel spent 6 years "brewing" then went from 0 words to 113K over about 7 months.  I had worldbuilder's disease, and it took a very conscious effort to break free and actually make progress.
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Offline marshall_lamour

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2016, 10:43:48 PM »
I spent about ten years worldbuilding (this included the narrative elements) before seriously beginning work on something publishable. During this time, I did write a shortstory prequel as a part of that worldbuilding process and also wrote bits and pieces of the main work. Since seriously beginning the main work, I have yet even glance at those bits and pieces, nor do I ever reference any my notes (though I edit and ammend them). I still consider all of the prewriting I've done as essential to developing my own sense of the world and narrative, but it's the writing that I did within the narrative that gave me the greatest insight, particularly when it comes to undertaking that work from beginning to end.

That being said, I do feel that I could have begun the main work sooner, but I would have had a harder time writing it. The notes that I kept came on their own, as I spent a great deal of time with my mind on the matter, but the writing was far more deliberate and forced me dredge deeper than was possible with notes. The shortstory prequel I wrote provided this opportunity in advance of the main work, allowing me to also explore tone and voice without the pressure of the intent to publish. This is about as extreme as the ten years spent prewriting, but the writing of the main work somewhat began of its own accord when there was essentially no better way left to explore what I had created.

So yeah, I don't think there's any way to know how much planning is too much, and while the work certainly shouldn't be forced, writing the story (or a story) may become integral to the worldbuilding itself. I think what's needed is a smooth and natural transition from prewriting to writing--being intrigued enough by your worldbuilding that the only satisfying way to proceed is to just write.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2016, 10:48:04 PM by marshall_lamour »
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Offline J.R. Darewood

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2016, 01:07:56 AM »
The current series in my head has the characters major plot points, key scenes planned out piece by piece over the last 20 years.  I've only written about 5% of what i've got in my head tho and still (endlessly) revising that tiny chunk.  My imagination runs way faster than my ability to write.

Offline Mr.J

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Re: Book Planning
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2016, 01:25:58 AM »
If you do not write, you will not be a writer.

Simple as that.

Offline K.S. Crooks

Re: Book Planning
« Reply #14 on: May 01, 2016, 01:43:54 PM »
I typically spend two or three months planning a book. I do this while editing the previous story I've written. When I'm done editing the previous story I start writing the new one. the planning continues while I write. New ideas for different parts of the story happen along the way. They are incorporated into the story as needed.
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