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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 21 February 2015
I've read a few 'how to' books for aspiring writers but this is one of the very few that have actually inspired me to think in different ways about the way I work. Veering towards overcomplication in parts, it nevertheless made me see the advantage of plotting carefully. Very helpful
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on 8 February 2016
I'm quite a disciplined guy in most things I do, but my approach to writing has tended to be more shoot-from-the-hip than set a plan and structure that will guide me. I've seen the results of the former which is a long-winded process of rewriting that could probably have been avoided - or at least seriously reduced. So, I was ready for this. I can't say I'll start producing books-full of notes over periods of months and years before starting my next first draft but I can see how applying many of the lessons in this great guide will make my writing experience a little more orchestrated and a lot less stressful!
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on 19 January 2016
Great book. Wish I had read this before starting on my first novel. Some people are plotters, some are pantsers. I tried writing my book with no outlining at all and after getting about 70% of the way through, I realised after fighting many struggles that it was going nowhere and there was too much I would need to change to make it work. Now I have read this excellent book I know that outlining is definitely for me and will put me on the right track when I start my next book. It will help me avoid the issues I encountered on my first book - character development, backstory, pace, plot points and the final outcome of the story!
I have also purchased the workbook as I believe that the outlining your novel tells you why to outline and what to outline but the workbook will tell you how.
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on 22 February 2013
I am working my way through this book and find it absorbing and helpful. I shall have it to hand when I outline my next novel. I like that it offers a great outlining method but encourages the reader to cherry pick the parts that best suit them.
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on 16 June 2013
Excellent book - I can't wait to put pen to paper and to try all the pieces of advice given in this book. They're practical and simple. The author takes us progressively to the various steps that need to be taken for a novel to be great - research, organization, in-depth thinking about the characters, the settings...
I particularly like the idea of the 'what if' to tap into our hidden imaginative skills. It's certainly working for me and I'm coming up with lots of silly or fantastic ideas!
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on 10 April 2016
I have only written short stories before, something that I am improving at steadily but I have ideas for a novel and I want to write that novel. It's a big thing to do and so I find myself looking for some help on how to go about doing that. I tend to take a really messy approach to short stories and that both bothers me and seems appropriate. Stories should be organic, they should grow and expand and change and be a bit messy, too tightly sewn up and they seem artificial. A novel maybe needs some control, some framework. But I'm afraid of this kind of detail, the outline. It sounds like a lot of work and it could kill the easy, organic nature of the story. This book gives me confidence that outlining is not what I feared. The process is beautifully discussed here and everything suggests the benefits outlining can give. The work required to do this seems worth it, a part of the process and even, maybe fun?! An outline can be fluid, she tells us, and like that, I get it. I've put some work into outlining my novel now and it feels like as much a fun part of the process as the actual writing. I feel like I'm in control of the whole thing but at the same time it can still evolve naturally and outline can evolve with it. This book made me realise how easy it is to get an outline together and how useful it can be to the process.
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on 16 September 2014
Thank you for taking the time to get this down and published. I can't wait to start planning my first novel now.
To all those writers out there thinking about purchasing this book I ask you, how many outlining processes have you looked at, tried even?
Believe me, I have looked at and tried many, from books & free downloadable worksheets to outlining software program's but none, not a single one, actually got me excited about outlining my novel on the scale that this one did. It's fantastic food for thought, (well for me, it actually took my thoughts to the far off places where my characters live and made me REALLY think about what matters) and in my opinion, this book is what every writer planning a novel needs in their back pocket.
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on 1 May 2014
If you're a bit of an outlining junky (like me), or simply want to experiment with pre-writing methods this book is fantastic. It breaks down the outlining process into easy to follow chunks, and gives tonnes of great questions and prompts to help you explore your story idea. I didn't 100% follow the map in this book because I know my style, but I can see myself going back to this book time and time again until I have a really solid personalised outlining structure, which is what this book aims to help you to do.
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on 12 May 2015
I have long known that l am a plotter. All 5 of my books were plotted before I wrote. I loved working through this book as I learnt so much. I got a few things right, but will now happily change the way set up my outline.
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on 17 April 2016
As a budding author I have found this book invaluable. It focused me in so many ways that tied in with the plan I had in my head to start writing a novel. If you want a book to get you thinking, to help your creative spark, this is the one for you. K. M. Weiland's book is easy to read, resourceful and therefore very helpful. "How will your character handle conflict?" "How old is your protagonist?" "How advanced is technology" in your story? These and many other questions open up the book you have inside you and help you develop it. K. M. Weiland's book is a piece of creative literature that will enable you raise your writing game and feel hopeful about your writing future. You need this book.
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