Mid Week Motivator: Nano Prep Part 3

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After asking the question What if? And developing your characters. It is now time to decide to plot or not to plot.

Some like to see where the story takes them. Namely without plotting out your novel. This can be fun, adventurous and frustrating. Having done this, I found myself hitting roadblock. Often unsure of what will happen next.

Plotting can give you direction. It is helpful in knowing what will come next, which scenes to focus on. Connecting the dots between those smaller scenes to the larger scenes.

I prefer a happy medium. Enough of an outline and character development to lead the way. However still enough flexibility for those fly the pants moments. On other words a firm Plantser.

Mid Week Motivator: Nano Prep Part Two

After filling in your question to What if?
Now is time to fill in the blanks.

I usually begin with characters. They are the prism in which your story is told. Who are your main characters? Who are your minor characters?

Knowing who they are makes it easier to plot. That is if choose to do so, more on that in another post.

Fully develop your characters. Really get into their heads. Question both your hero’s and antagonists motivations. Interview them. By understanding who they are, it will help to understand the story you want to tell.

Story Monday : Zombies & Survival

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The first Monday of each month I like to talk about story. How it manifests in our lives. Today, I want to talk about The Walking Dead and its companion series Fear The Walking Dead.

Fear The Walking Dead takes place at the start of the epidemic which leads us to the world of The Walking Dead. With the premiere of TWD still weeks away, this show is a nice little appetizer. The two shows tell the same story from two different perspectives. Before and after. I have to say, I am enjoying FTWD so far. I enjoy knowing more than the characters, waiting for them to discover all that has been revealed on TWD.

I enjoy these shows for several reasons. First the writing is just phenomenal, every episode I wonder what will happen next. This show demands you pay attention to the smallest details. You never know when it can surface later. Those are the best moments as a viewer.

But why is this show such a phenomenon? What about it draws us in so much?

I believe it is because it speaks to innate desire to survive . We can place ourselves in the lives of the survivors. I mean who resigns themselves to becoming a zombie? We want to believe we would fight and survive. That we would be Rick’s right hand guy or gal.

But this simply is not possible is it? The zombies out number the humans. For this reason, I fear the final fate of the family from FTWD. Surviving this, in those beginning days are no more than a fluke.

That being said, I love the opportunity to explore another part of this universe. To see the initial pandemonium as the pandemic rises. Our systems of government, cities and towns falling apart as some flee and others succumb to the disease. In the midst of hopelessness, there is a glimmer of hope.

Perhaps in the end it is this idea of hope that gives these shows an edge. In this desperate place, there can still be family. Together, we can get through this as opposed to alone. While one can physically survive, as Michonne did, ones heart and soul was damaged. Look how long it took her to break down those walls. Once she did, she began to love fiercely and began to live instead of simply survive.

A book I liked as a teen that followed these themes was The Stand by Stephen King. No zombies but a lot of good verses evil.