Day 5: Structure

For the novelist, structure makes creating a readable story possible.

But, as there are multitudes of readers and writers, there are many ways to find structure. Modern storytellers take their characters on ‘Hero’s Journeys’ thru 3 acts and 4 acts, stages and plot points and pinch points, beginnings & middles & ends.

STORY STRUCTURE: 10 Simple Keys to Effective Plot Structure - Michael  Hauge's Story Mastery

Married to a set of compelling characters, the structure begets the novel, or so I’ve discovered.

DaY FouR

Today’s reading: I’m grounded (as a human) in: Peace, Compassion and Strength.

Peace is often seen as passive, a recoiling from the fight. But it’s not; not when peace is a conscious choice to embody and project. We can fight for peace but when compassion and strength are included, it’s a lifestyle choice available to me, no matter the external appearances.

SO, am I ready to live in peace? To choose compassion and strength over fighting? An enlightening question to ask myself. And, when I say yes, my world is immediately more peaceful.

kindness traits

Day Three: Fictional Characters

Today I’m working on planning a series of adventure novels set in the 1970s and 80s.

A series depends on a couple of recurring characters that appeal to readers over a longer-term. so, even though it’s a book about structure, her character development advice helps me plan.

Jessica Brody (the author) says I need characters with: “… a strong, compelling want and an even more compelling need that readers will resonate with. … figure out what to do with this beautifully flawed character of yours.

Where are they going?

What is their big journey?

What is their most perfect plot?”

Day 2: Money

Plucked from my email:

“Let’s start with our goals and tolerance for risk since both should drive all other investing decisions. … willingness to tolerate market volatility and having a strategy for coping with it… allows us to handle a high level of risk. … we are getting “the market’s” return for a large part of our portfolio.” AAII

Got Goals?

Defined Risk?

The Best Book on the topic for me, a hands-on investor and personal money manager:

DAy OnE: PleasUre

I’m committing to publishing more. SO, here goes.

Reading this morning about “Healthy Hedonism”

“Our relationship with pleasure gives us a unique window into how well our emotions are working. We have core wired emotions that regulate how we feel and react. Emotions affect our core, visceral experience. We’re not going to be effective [without pleasure].” Dr. Nan Wise

This resonates, and it’s not JUST about orgasms. I seek to better access and express emotions in my writing. Coffee, chocolate, and sex all help.

What Goes Here?

The riveting story of my journey to writing stories?

I’m told there are lots of things an author can say about their work. As soon as I figure out what, I’ll add it here!

Writing a Novel is…

Harder than it looks!

After 10+ years of writing copy and content for products and courses created by clients, I finally decided I had an inspiring idea for a book I’d put my own (pen) name on. I’ve been a fiction reader forever and have certainly come across a few books I knew I could improve upon. Though many more amaze me with their creativity, the characters, the plot twists, the ingenious ways they to transport their readers into worlds past, future, and those hidden among us now.

But, ideas are worthless. The value comes from the creative effort, the production of something. And so, I started on a journey to find out how that’s done. As a lifelong student, my first act is to find a class, a teacher, and some fellow students. Turns out there are plenty of people, even some successful authors, willing to offer instruction on all aspects of writing. And most have written a book or two on the subject.

So far, one of my favorites is:

Almost as soon as I got started, I found myself bogged down in spreadsheets with outlines and word count targets. Zig this way, zag that way, pulled in a myriad of directions, many of which were dead-ends (at least for me). There’s software that makes writing long-form fiction more manageable but it requires learning a new tech system (off to read the instruction manuals I go).

And then, as I’m kind-of making some progress, pleased with how a few of my pages read, the publishing business must be dealt with (assuming I want to actually let strangers read my work). This isn’t anything new, it’s the reason I first decided to write for hire, ghostwriting for others who then printed and mailed my words to their prospects and clients. Long before Amazon broke the book publishing business wide open for authors, the gatekeepers strictly guarded the product that appeared on the shelves of bookstores and libraries. A new author had to find an agent to help them find an editor at a publisher who wanted their kind of book. Now we get to be publishers too!

But first, writing a good, salable book. That’s task #1.