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Thread: What Do YOU Do Before Beginning Story/Chapter

  1. #1
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    Default What Do YOU Do Before Beginning Story/Chapter

    So I was thinking about how I go about writing something and I wanted to ask others how they do it, because I think it would be a good way for others to approach writing...

    For me, I begin a story on a single idea, like my latest story I'm beginning has to do with Team Aqua and Magma and two others who are trying to stop them, from that idea I kind of find another smaller idea and begin either a chapter or the story, after I get something going, I go into a pre-write and I write down all my ideas and organize them...

    After I have organized my thoughts, I just write, and not adding any description, I write it almost how I would naturally say it, once I get everything I want said done, I go back and fill in description and change the structure of things that I really don't like...

    How does anyone else do it?
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    Honestly, the hell if I know...

  2. #2
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    What Do YOU Do Before Beginning Story/Chapter
    ;D

    Seriously, though, when I'm starting a completely new story, I play with the idea a lot first. I write down a few test scenes, I do a bit of research on stuff relating to my plot bunny for ideas (e.g., for Anima Ex Machina, I went and looked at scenes in old sci-fi movies to get a feel for what conventions they use... because the entire story is basically an old sci-fi movie in fanfic form), and I toss a few concepts onto a word document first. If I like the idea, I start playing around with potential beginnings until I find one I like and go with that.

    For new chapters, I just look at where I left off and write. I might go back to the earlier scenes and replace bits here and there, but otherwise, yeah, I just hit the ground running for them so I don't overthink a chapter. (I will, of course, do research when needed, but I don't know every last detail of what's supposed to happen in my story because I have an unfortunate tendency to lose interest in what I'm working on if I do that.)

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  3. #3
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    One word: daydreaming. I daydream and form a plot bunny in my head, and I usually don't write anything until all the details are in place. Afterwards, writing it out is very easy. So easy that I sometimes can go on and on for several chapters nonstop. That's how I go about developing a new story.

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    Depends on the story. Some I do quickly, particularly those where I'm challenging myself to something. Others I dawdle over, thinking it out carefully, writing out a skeleton form, filling out that form.

    But I always edit whatever I do before posting it. At least twice, usually three or more times. I make sure that various information matches up and any foreshadowing (hidden, herring, or otherwise) looks natural. Good editing is vital to good writing.

    And I try not to start posting something before I've got a good portion of it down. The couple of times I've posted a story that was still being worked on, I've always have problems with it.
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    I love that your mind went STRAIGHT there Valentine ;P


    When I start a new chapter I generally try to think about what I want to put in the chapter and what I want to achieve. I can't plan chapters at the beginning, because my writing style defies plans.

    So If I want to write a gym chapter then I know I want to devote most of the chapter to the gym and the eventual battle and I'll try not overload the rest of the chapter with plot.
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    I have found that if I start a story without "sitting on it" (meaning tossing it around in my head, developing characters, plots, and so on) then it will invariably die. This method has been tested twice, and I don't like to kill off stories, so... yeah. As for chapters, I do it in a similar way to Valentine: look back a little at the previous chapters, decide on a general concept on what's gotta happen, and go crazy from there. As an example in my current fic: at the start of Chapter 20 (that's the one now sitting in my virus-infected laptop waiting to be opened up again that I'm working on right now), I had a nagging feeling that the plot should continue. So I thought of the best possible way to continue the plot, which is in this instance a Gym Battle. So I look over previous chapters and say, "Dear Mew, I wrote the last gym battle eleven chapters ago?!?". So I now know what I need to do: Push the sub-plots to the side and write the Gym battle. If I don't have a special task in mind to advance the plot, I'll throw in a mini-arc or continue a subplot to pass the chapter along until the group can advance to the next city, and the next Gym Badge, and the next stage of the plot. [nods]


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    For stories, I'll have something simmering in my head for a while before I decide I can actually write it and then have some sort of a basic idea of what's going to go on in it. With chapters, I generally start off with some sort of a basic idea of what I want to accomplish in this chapter and then just start writing. I have an uncanny tendency to wind up writing all sorts of things that I never planned into the chapter that often really improve it in my opinion, so I don't feel the need to have it completely nailed down before I begin.

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    I'll usually just write out the first few chapters to see if the idea has any potential. So really, I don't do much before I begin, I just... begin.

    If it does have potential, I continue until I'm finished, and start uploading my incomplete work until it is finished, like I'm doing with Generation 2021.

  9. #9
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    Let's see.... I think about it, mull it over, envision every detail, complain about plot-holes, think about it some more, get frustrated, trash everything I have so far, start over, think about it again, draw and doodle my ideas, think about it again, start writing, hate it after two paragraphs, trash it, start over, think about it again, then write it nonstop. Very long process, but seriously, I think I overthink things too much... I think. When I'm done with a chapter, I reread it and worm out as many errors as I can, and then have my sister further edit it for me. Then it's finished and I put it up. Usually after I post it, I read it again and then scream in agony when I find more errors that I missed during the long process. After that, I start the whole thing over with the next chapter. Time for more thinking. -_-'
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  10. #10
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    Before I start a Story or chapter I just think of what the story/chapter could be about.

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonfree View Post
    For stories, I'll have something simmering in my head for a while before I decide I can actually write it and then have some sort of a basic idea of what's going to go on in it. With chapters, I generally start off with some sort of a basic idea of what I want to accomplish in this chapter and then just start writing. I have an uncanny tendency to wind up writing all sorts of things that I never planned into the chapter that often really improve it in my opinion, so I don't feel the need to have it completely nailed down before I begin.
    That's exactly what I do. I have a spark of an idea for a chapter, sit down and start it, and then stuff just pops into my head as I'm typing it and I go with it. It usually turns out pretty well.


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  12. #12
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    Sometimes, I usually have plot and chapter ideas all written out before I start writing the fic. Other times, I just write it out as it comes to my head.

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    Sometimes, I usually have plot and chapter ideas all written out before I start writing the fic. Other times, I just write it out as it comes to my head.

  14. #14
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    I'm the kind that just hates to plan ahead.

    I usually just pick up random ideas whilst daydreaming, and if i think its good enough, i'll turn it into a story. When i first started writing Card Tamer all i knew is that i wanted Pokémon to come out of cards like in YuGiOh. I started writing right away with absoluetley no clue of any plot or where the story was going to go. The plot just pops up as i go, until my daydreams inspire something else to happen. This usually means i end up with only a basic outline of what's going to happen (usually when i'm already several chapters in) and just hope for the best XD

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    When starting a new story the first thing I need to come up with is a title. After coming up with a proper title I start to form a plot based on that title, but very loosely. After coming up with some form of a plot I begin to create characters and from there I start to write. It contains much more steps than this, but this is the most basic form I can make it. I would most likely confuse a lot of people if I write down my thought process
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shadow Lucario View Post
    When starting a new story the first thing I need to come up with is a title.
    Hah, that's nice. That's one of the last things I come up with before starting to upload. Sometimes you just can't choose a suitable name in time. XD

  17. #17

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    For stories, I get a spark of an idea, either something I recently thought of or something I had been mulling over for a while. I think about it for a while and try to think how I can form a plot around that idea. I then write any ideas I have of the characters, plot, conflicts, resolutions, and so on. For example, I have about two pages of notes on this journey fic I recently thought of. When I know the characters, the plot, other conflicts, and the resolutions, I start doing an outline of each chapter.

    For chapters, after I finish one, I look back on my outline and read what I have plan for that chapter. I think about anything I need to change to fit what I just wrote.

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    I usually try to put the ideas together in my head on how to progress with the story properly; for me it usually takes a while since I have been doing multiple stories.
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  19. #19
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    Basically what I do before writing a story is come up with some extended metaphor or theme which has personal significance to myself and can be expressed as a story. Specifically regarding fan fiction, this means taking an extended metaphor or theme and applying it to the Pokemon world. My currently only posted work, Sea Cottage, stems from me practicing for a high school essay about the benefits and pitfalls of isolation. Since I had trouble practicing, I decided to bring the theme into a Pokemon setting, and thought of Bill's Sea Cottage in Generation I and III as a decent symbol for isolation given its reclusive location and Bill's spending most of his time alone. So I decided to start writing a story about someone going to the Sea Cottage and experiencing the benefits and pitfalls of what it symbolizes: isolation, illumination (Bill's Lighthouse in the anime), a closeness to nature and the ocean.

    For a first chapter, I simply set up the main character, the initial setting and a conflict - for example, in Sea Cottage, this is the main character not being wholly satisfied with his life in his hometown. For all other chapters, I take off from the previous, plan out the major events, start with some seemingly insignificant description which proves important in some way to the chapter in general and just write. Often what I plan does not come out fully as intended on paper, but thinking about potential events for a chapter a few hours before starting to right usually lets me write the chapter the way I want it.

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    Well, I actually got the idea of PLX several years ago. It was when I got back in Pokemon and got into writing fics for the first time (not Pokemon ones, very, very bad). Since I was little I'm prone to daydreaming, wild fantasy or something- so I suddenly got the idea of writing about the journey of another trainer that's kinda the opposite of Ash in some ways. Not in good/bad ways, but in stuff like preferance for these kind of tactics, not being dense or things like that. The idea just grew on and on- especially when I played a Pokemon game for the first time- it was Gen III for me. I'm one of the guys who grew up with the anime but I didn't know there were games back then. So, despite my first starter ever being Treecko, I wanted to write about the story of some trainer with a Blaziken.

    The goal was the same as Ash's- only to path was supposed to be different. Well, after several years about forgetting the idea, creating characters and setting and an eventual plot, my head was full of it. It was a fic by Jnoo on Bulbagarden that actually got me to write PLX. Thinking up characters was easy- I had already came up with the basic ideas for most of them. Same with the plot. But my main idea for PLX changed somewhat.

    At first, it was going to be a story about one trainer's journey through different regions, while changing teams like Ash. But then I thought- the main quest is being a Master. There are all kinds of people aiming for it. My trainer and Ash may have started knowing what they want to be. Others might just get sucked in and walk the path without knowing it. Someone who wants to be something else entirely but has to win a badge vause of a bet and finds he likes it, someone who just get sucked in a journey without wanting nd complains all the way, that kind of stuff.

    All their stories will be told if I'm in luck and keep on writing and improving.

    Now 'bout the chaps themselves...

    Basically, I've got the checkpoints through the journey- the gyms and the contests. I know what teams the characters will have- at least most of them and I know what characters I'm using and theri backstories and motivations etc.

    So I need chapters about introducing characters, exploring their backstories, gyms, contests, captures, GF and League.

    The rest is the fun part- the journey itself. It's a journey fic after all. Through the years I've gotten several ideas about what things I want to write.

    For example, I've always enjoyed eps in different shows that feature the cast making an independent movie or attending the filming of a movie. And I've always liked eps where the main cast comes in confrontation with some stereotypical mean celebrity.

    So, the next chap of PLX- chap 10- features the cast stumbling upon a movie being filmed inside Oreburgh Gate. And while the main focus is the main character's -Kale's- confrontation with said mean celebrity, at least half the chap focuses on the two Galactic Grunts that appear frequently in the story. They don't follow the group on purpose like the TRio nor they have a mascot- they just have a tendency of getting themselves in some mess. So while running away from a police officer they come across the filming as well and due to a misunderstanding are included in the filming. That helps me feature one of their main treats- they are incompetent when it comes to keeping what they've stolen but they have an uncanny ability in disguising. So naturally, they are good actors.

    Usually before I write a chapter, I read through the previous one and the commments and listen to music to get myself in the mood.
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    Well the idea would have been in my head for awhile, but what I do is: Go and get a cuppa', open the word document. Start my place list at the first song and then press play. So begins the writing process.

  22. #22
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    I don't know?

    My writing process is pretty variable. I develop some stories/characters for years before they ever make it onto paper. Other times I just wing it and write whatever happens next whenever it comes to me. A lot of my favorite stories seem to start as a random sentence that pops into my head when I'm lying awake at 2 am. I go to jot it down on the index cards I keep on my bedside table and end up writing so much that I have to whip out the laptop and stay up ridiculously late churning out plot details before I forget them all. My writing inspirations never happen at a reasonable time of day either. It's always really early morning or really late at night. You could argue that I can't write without being half-asleep XD

    If we're talking about a conscious effort, I guess the one thing I consistently do before starting a new project is procrastinate Getting a snack and cleaning your room is totally part of the creative process, yeah?

  23. #23
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    I think about how I'm going to start it. Then, I think about how I'm going to make an epic finish.

  24. #24

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    I let my mind wander to various things in my past, present, and dreams for the future. I think about various personality quirks that interest me, and things about my personality that intrigue others. Then I begin to think about Pokemon and how it was always a part of my childhood. I guess, unlike with other people, it was a bit more important to me because I moved around a lot so the first thing that came up between myself and potential friends would be Pokemon. I would show them the games and get them into it if they weren't already, or we would show each other our cards, or day dream aloud about how we would train Pokemon if we could.

    Realism is also important to me, so I tend to lean towards the darker aspects because nothing has ever been overly easy or simple for me. To gain, you had to give. To grow, you had to break. Though I haven't worked on my fic for a while due to writing a personal project, its presence amuses me and will probably never leave its little segment in my mind. There's always a little bit of everything floating around there at any given point.

    The end... usually I don't even know where it will end. It's something I would prefer to discover along with others. Mostly because when I realize the next point of what will happen in my stories, I end up rushing a little too much to that point.
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