1/25/10

Asking for directions, no matter your gender.

Got Plot Map?  Well now I do.  It's good and bad in the same breath.  Good because it helps you fill in the holes and bad because wow, you didn't know there were so many holes.

After surfing blogs two weeks ago, I discovered a work of art.  Now keep in mind, this is not the typical piece of "art" you'd find in a museum but something that captured a "gasp" in me.  Lisa Amowitz over at Why A? had this beautiful organized piece of art that I wanted for myself.  Her Plot Map for her WIP will please the graphic art designer in all of us.  

(Her map is much prettier than mine.)  But she doesn't take credit for this genius.  It was inspired by the blog of Martha Alderson over at The Plot Whisperer.  During the month of December, Martha does a International Plot Writing Month where she breaks down day by day what you should do to have a fabulous plot.  Now I, Girl with One Eye and very little patience, decided to make my map and then I discovered Martha's instructions.  Not, step one do this, step two do this but a general overview of how to map out your plot.

Now  this what you will need:
(click picture for detail)
I did mine on a dry erase board because I need to be able to hang it on the wall (or take it down when guest come over.)  As you see, Lisa Anowitz did hers on large squares of paper.  Pick you poison.  Be sure to actually read what the Plot Whisperer has to say during the month of December 2009 before you start.  I jumped the gun and then I found her words of wisdom to guide me.

Here is my Plot Map (in progress):
(click picture for detail)
My color post-its and their location have meaning.
Blue - chapters, highlights, outlines or scenes
Green - discoveries, concepts or ideas
Pink - reminders, clarifications, inserts, or changes
Orange - questions or plot pacing errors


Everything above the plot line is the story in progress and everything below the plot line are things to consider as the story progresses.  Now as I have stated before I have not finished reading the Plot Whisperer's instructions so I will keep you updated/changes as I go along.  Well I hope this inspires you to flesh out your story.  It did me.  Thanks Lisa Anowitz for sharing yours.

15 comments :

  1. Very nice work. I could probably find this by reading, but do you make this plot map before revisions, or in the early stages of the novel? Just curious.

    As for a book recommendation...Shiver or The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian were my last two and I sincerely loved them both.

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  2. Jonathon - I think you could do it either way. The Plot Whisperer did it in the month of December to follow NaNoWriMo so your story was complete (if you participated in NaNo) But I think you could take your beginning synopsis and bust out this map making your writing a whole lot easier.

    I loved Shiver and I will check out your second selection as well. Thanks!

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  3. WOW! Girl.. you really ran with this. So orderly. Not like my glorious jumble. I think I'm going to use this technique before I begin my new WIP. Plot Whisperer said it's useful for both drafts and outlining. Way to go!!!

    I'm giving you your very own post.

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  4. Oh you have no idea how much this helps! I have ideas and chapters written, but no overall outline. You may have just saved my novel!

    What really got me here was your comment on Into the Void, and then I noticed your profile says you're from TN! I grew up in Nashville (Brentwood, actually)--where are you from?

    Glad to have found your blog. Really glad. What kind of novel are you writing?

    Michele
    SouthernCityMysteries

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  5. Lisa -Thanks. See if what happens when we share. All kinds of goodness spreads. THanks for my very own post, I feel very special. :)

    Michele - Saved your novel? Can I call myself a superhero then? JK. Good ole Void, helping one southern bell find another.

    Brentwood, nice area girlie. Two summers ago my husband and I stayed and the Brentwood Inn. No, we didn't get a chance to visit the Carlton Mansion but maybe next time.

    I'm from a smaller town outside of Memphis, Brownsville. Heard of it? It's my home sweet home.

    I write YA paranormal romance. I'm on my second novel. This one is actually located in Tennessee. It's about a blue eyed girl finds love with a Native American boy and the challenges they face with small town opinions. I'm using some of my Cherokee roots (roots loosely based on the fact that my great grandfather was half Cherokee but I'll claim what I can) and a guy I dated in school.

    I checked out your blog. Mysteries huh, from the Southern cities. I bet you can conjure up all kids of juicy secrets for your book.

    Glad to find another TN girlie to chat with. Stop by anytime, ya hear. ;)

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  6. Too pretty! Good luck in your revisions. :)

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  7. Oh, my heck!! I'm dying here! DYING!! If I did that, I'd pass out for sure. But yours looks so so pretty!

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  8. I'm not sure I have the organizational skill for something like that, but it sure looks pretty. :-)

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  9. This is so incredible. I want to do this one day.

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  10. Every now and then, I feel like I should map my story out. Then I look at maps, and they look like gibberish to me. Ah. **hangs head in shame **

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  11. Aw, thanks! I love me a little Southern charm.;) We'll see if following is back up today and I'll join your site. Your WIP sounds interesting! Super-hero? Sure!

    Michele
    SouthernCityMysteries

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  12. Wow, that's actually really cool looking and seems like it could help. I'm the kind of guy that plans my novel into the ground so much that I don't even bother writing the novel, since the outline is better LOL.

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  13. Okay that's brilliant. I totally picked up a big dry erase board the other day with the intention of doing a plot thing. Now I am SO totally in. Thanks girl!

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  14. This is a fanTAStic idea! I can't wait to try it out! WHOOT! THanks for sharing! I need to go check out Lisa's blog, too! EEEEEKKKKK!!!

    Frankie

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  15. That's either a really cool plot map...or an outline of my neighborhood from 20,000 feet.

    I'm impressed!

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