"I'd love to write a book" a colleague said today "I just wouldn't know where to start".
"No, me neither" I said.
"But how do you do it, then? You must know. You write."
"Dunno really," I said after a long think "I sort of know more how I don't do it.
For a long time I was a bit embarrassed about my writing habits. Since I've been blogging I have found that it takes all sorts, so here is my take on my writing methods!
1. What's a plot? I don't.
2. I write the last line first and make a vague attempt to work towards it, but often this changes as the plot grows itself.
3. Inspiration can come from the back of a cereal packet, a chance remark or an odd fact I came across. The Diva Jaspari grew from a song by Antony and the Johnsons.
4. I often write two things at once - currently writing Natural Magick (a sequel to Coven of One), also re-writing Capricorn Wind, and just started growing a new one (?).
5. I research as I go along and get distracted for hours at a time. Finding suitable herbal remedies for 'Coven' led me to some really interesting work on bunions in the twelfth century.
6. I keep a notebook for each novel with vital information in it, timelines, dates, relationships, lists of characters etc.
7. I often wake in the middle of the night with a new paragraph laid out in my head. I learnt to put a pen and paper next to the bed but sometimes the call is so strong that I have to get up and write.
8. If there was no one, or nothing else to stop me, I would write for days at a time. When I have run dry with a novel I use poetry or a short story to kick start me again. Blogging has the same effect except I now blog in what I would call my coffee breaks - hah!
9. While I write I am living that book.
10. I adore every twist and turn, every plot problem, hurdle and headache that writing a book brings. I am only sad when I get to the last chapter and often put it off for a few days because I can't bear it to end.
Lost the plot - where the hell is it?