Thursday, August 1, 2013

From Brain to Page: How Kinsey Holley writes

In this series, we'll be talking to different authors about their brainstorming, outlining, and drafting processes. Want to be involved? Send an email to skylarkade@gmail.com with the headline "From Brain to Page".

From Kinsey Holley:

I'm a big, big fan of Word's Navigation Pane - used to be Document Map. That's how I keep my WIP in chronological order even though I don't write chronologically.

I always envision a book as a series of scenes, and the dialogue comes much easier than the narrative. So I make headings and subheadings for the scenes - these show up in the Navigation Pane.

If I need background material, like characters' ages, relationships to other characters or, in this case, song titles and lyrics, I put it at the top or bottom. Things I need to remind myself of going at the top. (Like the attached "Pretzel!" is a sex position. Shut up and fuck me is a scene for which I haven't done dialog yet.)

I write dialogue, scene by scene - just dialogue and if I need, really sketchy stage directions, ie., [he brushes face from her hair, then takes her chin and makes her look at him] but I don't worry about the narrative. Then I smooth it out, flesh out the dialogue, and lastly go through and write narrative.

5 comments:

Sydney Somers said...

I've never though about doing subheadings in my word docs so it would be easy to jump around in the Navigation. Although, it sounds like you'd love to the program Scrivener, which lets you do the same things, but it's more a more streamlined process.

Juniper Bell said...

Interesting, Kinsey! I too find dialogue the easiest thing to write. I haven't tried your technique, though. I might give it a shot!

Kelly Jamieson said...

Very interesting! Everyone is SO different.

I recently discovered One Note, which I think looks super cool, but haven't tried it yet. Waiting to see if anyone else uses it...

Kinsey Holley said...

I haven't tried One Note yet either. I have tried Scrivener but I just couldn't get the hang of it. Seems like whenever I try something new I end up going back to Word.

Skylar Kade said...

I've been using yWriter for years (like a free, stripped down Scrivener) but I'm slowly trying out Scrivener. Not convinced yet...