Developing Sophie Lives

Although I started to write Sophie Lives for a peice of coursework from Foundations in Creative writing with the Open College of the Arts, I am going to make the use of social isolation to continue with writing this novel. I’m not concerned about making rapid progress, just little steps. There’s no need to rush.

It’s not easy to develop the initial idea, but I have added more to the first chapter, which begins with the link to Sophie Lives above. However, saying it’s not easy doesn’t mean to say that I havent been able to continue writing, because I have, and further possible developments have come into my mind. Although I am currently adding to the day that Sophie comes round from her overdose, her sister has come into the frame, although we haven’t met her as yet. This has opened the pathway towards Sophie getting to A and E, and then how she ends up in a psychiatric hospital.  I have already written a very small part of that scene, which can then  move me into the second chapter.

I’m pretty sure that I am not following the best plan for writing a novel.  I have previously read that people develop a plan for the novel before they begin to write; ideas for structure and how the  book progresses. All I know is that I am going to write of Sophie’s journey through her pain and into recovery, intersperced with flash backs from the abuse that she suffered at Mar’s hands.

It’s quite intense to write about at the moment to be honest, and I am writing this reflective commentary for my diary, which allows my thoughts to crystalise. It also means that I can have a break form the mental and emotional intensity.

11 Replies to “Developing Sophie Lives”

  1. As for your method – well you know that is what editing is for, and 2nd drafts and 3rd drafts and re-writing. I would wager most authors have an idea first, then make lists, outlines etc before they sit down to pull it all together and write the story. I am a little in awe of anyone who has ever written a book of any kind – I wouldn’t know where to start and I have no stories to tell.

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    1. I just have some basic ideas at the moment. I know I’m going to need to do some research on domestic violence services and recovery for future chapters. I can certainly do the first three and see where I go from there.

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  2. I worried about writing a novel the “correct” way for some time. I thought I needed charts and graphs and a timeline and all kinds of external things. Then I watched a vlog with one of my favourite (and prolific) authors, Nora Roberts. She “seats of the pants” it. She sits and writes and gets to the end. I thought, “well, if it’s good enough for Nora…” Which is a long way of saying, do what works for you 🙂

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  3. Thanks for sharing how this is going for you. You’re right that developing an idea is not so easy. Good job keeping with it! Lots of people are “pansters” (write by the seat of their pants) or planners and then there are “plantsers”, a cross between the two. I’m trying to be the latter. So far the vast majority of my writing (for my novel) has been pantsing. However I’ve gotten to a point where I really need to do some plot outlining and what not, to help me keep track of everything and where it may or may not be going. Maybe a mix of both will help you too. But keep with it through thick and thin, that’s how they come to be (so I hear).


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      1. Good call. I’m okay with not knowing EVERYTHING from the start over the middle although it helps to be a least a couple of chapters ahead in your mind. It seems to me as long as we keep knowing a couple chapters into the future we’re at least off to a good start. 😉

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