Tuesday, June 09, 2009
A huge welcome to Stacey Goldblatt, my Smackdown Spotlight for this second week of whipping our manuscripts into shape! (And don't forget to check out HipWriterMama Vivian, Jolie's Smackdown Spotlight over at CuppaJolie.)
Stacey is not only the author of STRAY, a funny and honest YA novel about a girl with a sixth sense for dogs - and her chance for freedom - but her second novel, GIRL TO THE CORE, will release next month. You can visit Stacey at her website and blog!
Stacey is here to whip her third novel manuscript into shape and "get to the root of what 'happens' in the story." Stacey says, "Typically, my first draft allows me to find my who, my 'what' my who wants, my where, my why. I don't outline and I never know what's going to happen. I'm constantly going back, but it's in that going back and brush stroking character and plot that allows me momentum to move forward."
Here are Stacey's must-haves for revision:
Bulletin Board: "For GIRL TO THE CORE my bulletin board was rife with Van Morrison lyrics, Irish pub imagery, breathtaking images of Ireland, W.B. Yeats poetry. That helped remind me of my main character's Irish roots and her day-to-day life with her Irish family and the family's pub. My neighbor lent me a statue of the Virgin Mary because I needed to be reminded of the icons my character faced when she walked into her house each day."
Post-Its: "I wrote out chapter by chapter quick synopses of the novel--each chapter fit on a post-it note--and had that on display. I also figured out with my editor the three main plot points of the novel and had that on the bulletin board as well. All of this in one location created a true sense of the novel when I wrote."
Playlist: "Music is important to me and my characters. That said, I need songs that "fit" the novel I'm working on as I write. To date, I have a playlist for each novel."
Binder: "While I'm reading through the draft, I can add comments/story/dialogue by inserting notebook paper in the needed spot. This helps me "grow" the current draft and allows me some longhand time."
Journal: "I journal about the novel I'm revising while I'm revising. What I'm struggling with. Ideas I have. The journal is akin to a support group. I can go to it and let it all sag. It allows me to vent and problem solve."
Readin' Time: "Reading inspires me. The escape permits me to get out of my head and into someone else's story/voice.It refreshes me so I'm ready to move forward when I sit down with my own draft."
Thank you, Stacey, for your whip-lashing inspiration! Smackdowners, what are the must-haves in your revision arsenal? For me, it's my Excel spreadsheet and a cup of tea. And as much thinking time as I can get!
Tomorrow: WHIP TIPS from Brent Hartinger and Darcy Pattison!