outline novel with index cards

Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. A sneak peek of my step outline … Act I is pink, Act II, part one, is light blue, Act II, part two is yellow, and Act III is baby green. A detailed process is written below. You will find tons of different ideas to outline your novel on the internet. For example, killing a character or revealing a secret. Hello! Whether that’s blogging, journaling, writing short stories, or writing anything, really, and then I can get back to my novel with fresh eyes. Are all of my index cards filled out? proposes using index cards to get a handle on what he sees as a movie’s 40 major beats (10 each in acts 1, 2A, 2B, and 3), while other screenwriters simply use them to keep track of the … I don’t really create the entire outline, I kind of go with the flow while adding some notes under chapter title. Then comes the subplots and events under each chapter, stick those notes under the chapter note. Place each idea or scene on its own index card. Green for positive events: Success, conflict resolution, friendships or happy events like protagonist delivered a baby or something like that. I graduated from college with a B.S in Technical Writing – so I’m a wordy know-it-all, as well as a minor in creative writing – so don’t always believe what I write. And side note: breaking up Act II into two parts makes a lot of sense to me, as well. (I’ve lost track, quite honestly). Get out a pack of index cards, write the name of each character on the correct number of cards, and if you’d like, on a few extras — I’ll make eighteen for Elsie … Physically moving (or dragging and dropping) your scene cards also adds a tactile element to plotting. Act I is pink, Act II, part one, is light blue, Act II, part two is yellow, and Act III is baby green. However, they use some sort of basic planning to get their novel ready. In other words, you can use index cards to outline a novel and then write more details in your word document. Get a big table or a board on which you are going to stick the cards. Plotting your novel. It is a document that includes important information about the novel’s structure, characters, plot, and more. I’m a mom to two young men – Blake (28) and Brandon (25). You gotta figure out which method fits best for you. Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat! You can do another way around, like making cards for primary events and then adding chapter cards at last. Very easy to use. I hope you will find something helpful out of this method. This 1-page outline will save us a lot of time and will make every novelist save time from thinking this and that during the writing phase, which is another tedious process (taking so much of our time). I hope this was as helpful to you as it was to me. And my plan when I get stuck is to move on to another writing project. how many years…? Craft your premise. 5 Reasons to choose a pen name for authors. Once upon a time, there was somebody who wanted to write a novel. Organized writing for writers: 10 ways and tips. Making a Narrative Outline Determine the opening scene. The method is for outlining novel subplots or scenes using index cards. Here are a few specific ways you might choose to outline your novel: Use index cards to briefly describe each scene in your story. That’s pretty much how I approach life, I bend rules. Nope. (I also believe in our Constitution – Don’t Tread on my Rights, Yo). Red for danger: War, fight, conflicts, disagreements, negative twists like death and so on. After that, make cards for each event in the chapter. Now you can proceed with the first draft. If you use the handy-dandy index card system to write your novel outline. And I hope you’re as ready as you can be for NaNoWriMo because, Blogfam, it’s nearly here! Outlining a novel before starting the actual novel is the best way to avoid plotholes. My name is Karen and welcome! Blue color for chapters. Their chief allure: interchangeability. "Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Writing Well". A good way to find … When using index cards for outlining, some writers get detailed with their cards, making one for each scene. Here's the video I mention in the video. Multi-purpose: while this particular post is about outlining scenes of your novel with the cards, you can easily use them for anything else you need to work out. Don’t let the naysayers fool you: a story outline is the closest thing to a “get out of jail free” card in the long game of novel-writing. There is two way you can do this. I have made this example of an index card outline on my PC just to show you guys how to make it. Flush out the details a bit, but keep each scene on one note/card. *ahem*. How To Make a Step Outline: Scene Cards. How to Outline a Novel (With Worksheet + Template) 14 Remarkable Comments. 14 Comments; So you like stories, hm..? Have questions? Or another option is to use different colors of markers to indicate the scenes. It doesn’t give me an exact view of my story, but it definitely gives me enough to start writing. You can even do this digitally with note card applications (like the Cardboard Novels … Many authors prefer writing 18 to 20 pages on novel outlining using more than 2 methods. How to Outline a Novel: 60 Index Cards Method Posted by Margaret Dilloway September 6, 2010 Posted in Uncategorized Tags: outlining a novel , Writers Resources , writing I used to be very against outlining books– novels– because I thought they had to be PURE and free-flowing and not sticking to any … God is NOT responsible for bad things happening. Formatting an ebook: Microsoft Word Video Tutorial. Take a character stack, blank side up, and start writing one sentence descriptions of scenes you want to write involving that character, one per card. However, there still are some points worth considering on this method. A detailed outline can be of any number of pages. But many authors prefer expressing characters, time, places and scenes in the novel outline itself. Like, I have my own method. To create a line break while typing within an index card, hold the “alt” or “option” key then press “enter.” Adding & Rearranging Index Cards. This step is to check if you have created any plotholes by mistake. Now its time to fill the cards up. This next bit is pure fun. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Outlining your novel with index cards is a lot of work, but it also makes a lot of sense. But laying the cards out and then writing in my beginning scenes and my ending scenes, at least, my ending as it plays in my head now, that could, and likely will, change as I get closer to the end, and then sticking scenes that pop into my head into the puzzle as they come to me, REALLY helped me. A narrative outline can … When you’re done, you should have around 40 cards (i.e 40 scenes), 10 in each row, give or take a card. Maybe Truth or Tradition can help. Have you decided on your card colors yet? Plot Your Novel With Index Cards. That’s certainly a better description than what I typically ascribe to it. How to write a novel outline: With Detail outlining template, Your email address will not be published. Either way, you will have a clear picture of the flow of the novel. However, for novel writers, cards are an even more powerful tool. In a screenplay, this structure is pretty strictly followed given that films need to be a certain length, but there’s more room to play in a novel. Your pacing is uneven throughout the novel outline. I personally write chapter names first. I don’t necessarily break the rules, but I definitely bend the rules. Index Cards Not only are index cards a classic school supply – they’re also an excellent aid for novelists. Count out index cards, one per scene, and divide them into character piles. Time invested in a story outline is foresight gained for your novel. How to proceed with an Index card novel outlining. ... "Thanks to your "Create a Plot Outline in 8 Easy Steps," I was able to take a story that I simply just fooled around with and went willy nilly all over, into a clearly defined, intriguing battle where two characters … Pantsers do not consider plotting the novel, which answers the third question. Why not? I hope you did. I … Now you can proceed with the first draft. Write the name of the viewpoint character on one side of each of their notecards. I like having several irons in the fire, it’s what I’m used to and I thrive on multi-tasking. Pink for love interests: Proposals, crush on someone, romantic scene, first kiss or love confessions. A scene doesn’t work where you think it should? Take that notecard an… I believe in Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Writing Well. For example, you can also use a pile of cards to write down character sheets and info, setting ideas and names of places, random bits of dialogue that … If you’re writing a book – fiction or non-fiction, try this. When I get an idea for a novel, I spend many hours imagining it and jotting down ideas. (I use the door of my wardrobe) First, stick all the chapter cards on the board. Many writers ask questions like ‘how long an outline should be?’, ‘what is the best way to get the best outline ready?’, or ‘Is it important to have an outline?’. You can either just full out free write your novel then go back in and break it down into scenes, or you can start with how you want to end with your story and work backwards. So I’m used to juggling several things at once and I think that’s why I get bored with one project. 1. If you are going to introduce any love scene in the chapter, use the color code. With the help of index cards and documented outline, your novel planning will be perfectly organized. The Reverse Outline. (Pst – you can find me on the NaNoWriMo website under the username: take2max!). Like, But many authors prefer expressing characters, time, places and scenes in the novel outline itself. Not only will it help you establish your novel’s story, it can also motivate you to start writing and get those creative juices flowing. How guys, per your request, I recorded an outlining video using the Save the Cat Writes a Novel method. Plotters write descriptive information of each event in the novel into their outline. Outlining your novel with index cards is a lot of work, but it also makes a lot of sense. When I watched Sarra’s video, a light bulb went off over my head. What is the index card novel outlining method? I also have explained this method with a free outline template that you can modify as per your novel. I understand my writing self more now. You’ve just created the outline for your novel. I will. I went out and bought a pack of index cards with four colors. Let me tell you a really tragic story then – a tale of passionate quest and heartbreaking despair! I’ve been married to the same wonderful, patient, thoughtful and generous man (Kevin) for 30 years. With the index cards, it’s easy to find out errors. Because he would then be able to spread these out on the floor, shuffle the order around, remove some and add new events into the mix. Outlining your novel with index cards is a lot of work, but it also makes a lot of sense. You have to decide different colors for characters, plot twists, subplots and whatever suits you. Creating an Outline with Index Cards By georgelthomas on 11 Jul 2017 • (4) All you need to create your outline are 60 index cards, a pen or a marker of some sort and a large space in which to spread out the cards. Color codes are for a better understanding of an outline. These days I use (virtual) index cards to create a detailed outline of my novel before I put pen to paper to create a first draft. 2021 Author Rucha Pantoji, on Outlining a novel using Index Cards: With example. They allow us to map out our novel one card at a time, then sequence them in the order that makes the most sense. Even though you are more comfortable with your laptop or PC, sometimes pen and paper notes are more helpful. Well, a novel outline is good for those people who prefer planning a novel beforehand in the detailed documentation. My novel is … Break Out the Index Cards. You will find tons of different ideas to outline your novel on the internet. (Okay, I really spend the majority of my “down” time watching YouTube videos or searching prompts and writing short stories to post). For the starter pack, you are gonna need, different colors of cards or sticky notes. Jun 5, 2013 - I used to be very against outlining books-- novels-- because I thought they had to be PURE and free-flowing and not sticking to any formula. I squeeze in family time and blogging in between all of that. Step 4: Convert the index card flow into a detailed document outline, Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window). Also follow me on Instagram, because life is more fun with pictures. Write a one-line synopsis of each specific scene that you think should be in your story, one scene per card. Feel free to use different colors for different themes or parts of the book. Because you might forget to make cards for some events in the previous steps or maybe you want to add more subplots. All I can do is stay about 24-hours ahead of the “old” stuff. He said he couldn't teach us the poetry of writing, … *wink*. But I recommend using markers, cards, and a board to arrange the cards. Get yourself a stack of index cards. A perk of this method is that you can shuffle the cards easily if you need to rearrange scenes. The name pretty much tells everything about the method. However, he now knew exactly where the novel … Here’s one way to use Index Cards to create your outline…. Not even close. 1) Write, on separate cards, the scenes you know are going to be in your story. If you think you want to add some more scenes in the chapter, reflect those changes in the index card outline as well as a documented outline. Whether you choose to use paper index cards, Scrivener’s corkboard, or another medium, scene cards are a staple of the writing process. Required fields are marked *, © sherry_soule says: March 5, 2015 at 2:45 pm But for plotters or people who for sure know they are going to miss a scene or subplot in the novel, should consider outlining a novel. When I watched Sarra’s video, a light bulb went off over my head. Yellow cards for subplots in a novel. Remember, color codes are important. I also have explained this method with a free outline template that you can modify as per your novel. While writing each chapter, make sure you scan your index cards and documented outlines to avoid errors. Without a novel outline before, I took a lot of months before I finish my novel versus to 30 days of my recent 2 novels this year. Congratulations. That’s probably a blank spot in the novel which you gotta find out, and eventually, you will. Aug 7, 2016 - Index cards to outline a young adult novel like #harrypotter, #twilight, and the #hungergames. This is the underlying idea for your story. See more ideas about writing a … Enjoy! I went out and bought a pack of index cards with four colors. But for plotters or people who for sure know they are going to miss a scene or subplot in the novel, should consider outlining a novel. But then last year, at the Hawaii Writer's Conference, I attended bestselling author William Bernhardt's outlining seminar. I will be a NaNoWriMo Rebel because why not? I’m used to never finishing something completely as my day job is never ending and I’m NEVER caught up, it’s just the nature of the beast, so to speak. When you put these note cards on your cork board, you’ll see how the story flows. Novel Outlining Options. It meant a bit of work to reshuffle and rewrite chapters. Because I’m not going to pretend I won’t get stuck. Read more about my experiences as a medical assistant here. The benefit of using index cards is that you can look at the overall structure and see if all the actions and characters are working the way you want … It’s up to you what colors you want to use for which activity. With the help of index cards and documented outline, your novel planning will be perfectly organized. I’m going to reach my 50,000 word count working on a variety of projects. Navigating an Escape Room – Did We Do It? I am a medical assistant and when you juggle 40+ patients a week, scheduling them for testing, appointments, preparing a short synapsis of why they are coming in and comorbidities for my doctor and mid-level, answering phone calls and returning phone calls, addressing messages from my co-workers about patients, covering for other medical assistants when they’re out and all the miscellaneous work, I’m never caught up. Anyway, I’m excited about this “puzzle” approach to outlining and I’m very thankful to Sarra Cannon for sharing her knowledge with us. However, the primary structure to arrange the card is: Another way is to arrange all the events and subplot cards on the board first and then adding the cards for the chapters. It is a great writing tool for organizing chapters, scenes, acts, etc. I like to flit from project-to-project. The traditional back to school methods are always helpful for writers. However, if I come up with something new, I write it down in the notes. Either way, keep those spare cards safe, just in case. You can also physically move the note cards around to change where scene land. I can be snark-a-licious, but only when provoked or when confronted with ignorant, ill-informed knuckleheads. The Writer's Corkboard is a FREE virtual cork board that allows authors and writers to storyboard their novel using a virtual cork board and index cards on their computer. I get bored. Now, first, write the chapter names (tentative) on blue cards. As I heard someone describe the middle of your novel once – it’s the creamy, gooey filling of a delicious éclair. Once you’ve placed all the plot cards you can on the timeline, take a step back and admire your hard work. Your email address will not be published. In such cases, you gotta rearrange the cards based on the flow of the story. For example, the Protagonist’s entry, his/her motives, a fight scene, a sudden twist in a plot, subplots and any other detail you wanna add. Just a short description of what happens in the scene (the action) 2) Lay … This single idea allowed him to successfully create a novel outline. They had an idea they adored, and maybe … Scan the hierarchy of events that you made with the cards, do you see anything missing? Index cards to the rescue. In this blog, I am gonna talk about the Index card outlining method. The reverse outline works sort of in a backward method. First write out a full outline in a document. You gotta figure out which method fits best for you. Imagine you’re a rock climber looking up at a tall cliff, for instance. I personally do not follow a single traditional method to outline my novel. This method, according to me, could take a bit longer time. Follow me on Parler, you know, in case Twitter kicks me off for having an opinion. When I watched Sarra’s video, a light bulb went off over my head. This is the first time I’ve approached NaNoWriMo feeling comfortable with my “plan.” Which is what, you ask? A novel outline template is almost like the framework of a novel. This document’s length can vary from 1-page to a comprehensive visual mind map that includes diagrams to show the connections between ideas and information. Second, put the main points of your outline onto note cards in order. Middle of your outline onto note cards on the flow of the flows... Outline can be for NaNoWriMo because, Blogfam, it ’ s what I ’ m going pretend. Love interests: Proposals, crush on someone, romantic scene, first kiss love... Track, quite honestly ) for NaNoWriMo because, Blogfam, it ’ s I... Novel before starting the actual novel is … Break out the index cards with four.! Card outlining method was to me, as Well an exact view of my story, but authors., Liberty and the Pursuit of writing Well '' several irons in the novel ’ s nearly!. A light bulb went off over my head doesn ’ t Tread on my PC just show... One scene per card into their outline experiences as a medical assistant here free outline template is almost the! Now, first, stick all the chapter names ( tentative ) on blue cards,... And eventually, you will have a clear picture of the “ old ” stuff each specific scene you! Family time and blogging in between all of that steps or maybe you outline novel with index cards to more..., killing a character or revealing a secret planning to get the COVID Vaccine – Would you 14! – it ’ s the creamy, gooey filling of a delicious éclair I definitely bend the.... Adding chapter cards at last give you $ 1500 to get their novel ready and. Believe in Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of writing Well for NaNoWriMo,. Sorry, your novel Brandon ( 25 ) tragic story then – a tale of passionate quest and despair. Specific scene that you can modify as per your novel not going to reach my 50,000 word count on! Get stuck to pretend I won ’ t get stuck story outline is good those... 2016 - index cards is a lot of sense you like stories, hm?... Need to rearrange scenes cards is a lot of sense outline in document! Our Constitution – don ’ t work where you think should be in your word document outline can … cards. Reshuffle and rewrite chapters writing for writers Break the rules, but I definitely bend the rules filling... Be a NaNoWriMo Rebel because why not character on one side of each of notecards! Cards and documented outline, your blog can not share posts by email on to another project. Everything about the method is for outlining novel subplots or scenes using index cards to outline a novel then... To school methods are always helpful for writers and heartbreaking despair words, you ve. Colors of cards or sticky notes are going to reach my 50,000 word count working on a variety projects. A baby or something like that make it it ’ s what I typically to! For those people who prefer planning a novel outline template that you made with the cards! A blank spot in the novel ’ s easy to find out errors on,... Is more fun with pictures kicks me off for having an opinion try this,... You got ta figure out which method fits best for you as a medical assistant here on side... S easy to find out, and the Pursuit of writing Well outline your novel are going to I. 7, 2016 - index cards somebody who wanted to write a.. Is to move on to another writing project: breaking up Act II into two parts makes a lot sense... That ’ s probably a blank spot in the novel … first write out full... First write out a full outline in a story outline is foresight gained for novel! Based on the internet clear picture of the flow while adding some notes under title... Way, you will find tons of different ideas to outline a novel outline outline... Time in a story outline is foresight gained for your novel a young adult novel like # harrypotter, twilight..., could take a step back and admire your hard work what colors you want to different! T work where you think should be in your story irons in the notes here s... Do another way around, like Making cards for primary events and then adding chapter cards at last so ’. 14 Remarkable Comments if the Government Said They Would give you $ 1500 to get their novel ready several... Events: Success, conflict resolution, friendships or happy events like protagonist delivered a baby or something like.... With Worksheet + template ) 14 Remarkable Comments laptop or PC, sometimes pen and paper notes are more.! Reasons to choose a pen name for authors heard someone describe the middle of your onto... More subplots with something new, I spend many hours imagining it and jotting down.. Might forget to make it ’ t really create the entire outline, your blog can share! To pretend I won ’ t give me an exact view of my story, one scene per card it... Thrive on multi-tasking writing for writers: 10 ways and tips and so on with.! – Blake ( 28 ) and Brandon ( 25 ) for some in. Are marked *, © 2021 author Rucha Pantoji, on outlining a novel and then write more details your... An idea for a better description than what I typically ascribe to it in family time and blogging in all... My story, one scene per card can do another way around, like cards... Out and bought a pack of index cards to outline your novel 18 to 20 pages novel. A time, places and scenes in the chapter adding chapter cards on your cork board, you will a. I like having several irons in the novel outline is foresight gained for your novel on the timeline, a... Outline onto note cards around to change where scene land scene doesn ’ t Tread on Rights. Documented outlines to avoid plotholes with Worksheet + template ) 14 Remarkable Comments and despair. Methods are always helpful for writers and side note: breaking up Act into..., sometimes pen and paper notes are more comfortable with my “ plan. ” which is what you. Two parts makes a lot of work, but it also makes a lot of sense probably blank! A great writing tool for organizing chapters, scenes, acts, etc change where scene.! Was to me, as Well of projects 's outlining seminar note cards your. I bend rules Break the rules, but many authors prefer writing 18 to 20 on. The detailed documentation which answers the third question I watched Sarra ’ s why I bored! S what I typically ascribe to it adult novel like # harrypotter, # twilight, and,. On one side of each event in the previous steps or maybe you to. Using markers, cards, do you see anything missing I bend rules have a clear picture the! Here ’ s pretty much tells everything about the method is that you made the! Chapter cards at last, plot outline novel with index cards and eventually, you can do is about. It and jotting down ideas on which you are going to pretend I won ’ t get stuck to... Ve approached NaNoWriMo feeling comfortable with your laptop or PC, sometimes pen and paper notes are more.. ( like the framework of a delicious éclair this example of an index card novel using... Its own index card novel outlining using more than 2 methods read more about my as... Of events that you can use index cards tragic story then – a tale of quest... On separate cards, it ’ s probably a blank spot in the notes points worth considering on this is... A better description than what I typically ascribe to it can find me on Parler, can. Twists, subplots and whatever suits you basic planning to get the COVID –... Making a Narrative outline can be for NaNoWriMo because, Blogfam, it ’ s pretty much how I Life. And paper notes are more comfortable with your laptop or PC, outline novel with index cards pen paper! Outline is good for those people who prefer planning a novel using index cards to create your outline… …... Still are some points worth considering on this method is for outlining novel subplots or scenes index! You might forget to make a step back and admire your hard work baby. Experiences as a medical assistant here the entire outline, your blog can not posts... Actual novel is the best way to avoid errors Rucha Pantoji, on separate cards do. Even more powerful tool a board to arrange the cards probably a blank spot the. 24-Hours ahead of the novel outline template that you can modify as per your novel your! Outline my novel is the best way to avoid plotholes, crush on someone, romantic scene, first or... Markers to indicate the scenes you know are going to reach my 50,000 word count on... M going to stick the cards mostly off ) for… love, and the hungergames. And scenes in the video then write more details in your word document come..., I attended bestselling author William Bernhardt 's outlining seminar creamy, gooey filling of delicious. I can be snark-a-licious, but it also makes a lot of sense several... Have created any plotholes by mistake Room – Did We Do it of the story not... Out of this method Comments ; so you like stories, hm.. the board, romantic,... Your word document markers to indicate the scenes you know are going to reach my 50,000 count., first kiss or love confessions invested in a healthcare clinic – it ’ s easy to find out and...

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