This may or may not be useful to other aspiring authors out there, but I wanted to give a detailed outline of how my writing process actually works. It is not in any organized matter whatsoever. I basically start in a series of phases:
A sketch might just be a simple scene or concept that I want to add to whatever I am working on. It usually starts a new chapter. It is composed of a dialog interaction between characters, and then builds from there. I might have general idea of what I want to happen around the scene, but not a whole lot of details are included beyond general objectives. Punctuation and dialog tags are thrown out the window.
This is also the majority of the documents that flood my folder on my computer…I really should do something about that.
AN EXAMPLE FOR YOU:
“C’mon, Felix, I have to take inventory and resupply”
“Ugh, fine. Just until you fall asleep though.”
“Ok.” *an hour passes*
“YouRe still awake, aren’t you…”
A skeleton is composed of one or many sketches stitched together. This is the backbone (heheh) of a chapter, and it defines the start point, and an end point, but that is all. It reads more or less like a screenplay, but with even less structure.
This is where I say whatever garbage is necessary in order to get complete actions. The chapter at this point will be full of fragments and sentences written in my own personal voice, and is often riddled with memes and innuendo. If there are any key description points I want to include, I usually do so here.
This mode helps me get through writing blocks and pass over to areas of the document that I actually do have better ideas for, and makes me less frustrated with the entire process.
This is where things start to get fleshed out. I turn whatever fragments I have plastered here into more coherent sentences, writing in whatever narrative voice I have chosen for the final product. I also flesh out dialog interactions into something readable. When I am finished with this phase, the document becomes adequately readable, but it is still rather plain. Like the Low Sodium versions of canned soup. Gross.
This is where I start to make things “pretty,” focusing on the senses of the reader to make the text more immersive. I will usually spend the most time in this phase. After I get it to my liking, I will also do a grammar/punctuation comb through before I release it to Black Phase to make sure I don’t anger the language gods.
When the text reaches this point, it is generally considered “readable” to outside audiences. It may never be actually considered “finished” by my standards, but very few things I write ever are. I may still pass through this phase several times to find better ways of describing/shrinking things.
And that’s about it on how I make a first draft. Now you kind of know how my brain works….maybe. So whenever I reference these things on my Twitter
page, you now know wtf I am talking about.