Friday, November 2, 2012

You need the bones.

I told my daughter something last night and thought I'd pass it along.

She commented that she keeps changing tenses.  First of all, the fact she understands tenses and that she shouldn't be changing them is amazing.  The kid is 9.

But anyway, she is concerned because she is doing it and was grabbing an eraser to fix it, since she's hand writing it.  I told her not to worry about it now.  Just write.  She looked at me funny like, how was she supposed to ignore problems like that now!?  It's distracting!

Well, yes, it is, but during NaNo, you don't delete.  You press on.  Fix it later.  Write it now.  Get it out.  Get it on paper.  Fix it later.

She still looked confused so I told her:

You need the bones.  First you need the part that makes the story strong.  Beginning, middle, end.  Get that out.  The rest is just fluff.

The meat is the characters and how strong and real they are, how good the details are and how real you can make the whole thing.

The skin is the spelling, what we often see first, but really it's just window dressing.

What you're worrying about is hair and make up.  You need the bones first.  You can doll it up later.

She chuckled, and continued on, and put that eraser down.  Good girl.

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