For the past eight years, I’ve been working on a fantasy series, projected to encompass five books. While I’m in the query trenches with a completely different novel, I’ve found my way back to BOOK ONE of the Falling series as my current work-in-progress. Having been away from the actual act of writing this book, I’m now reorienting myself with both my own fictional world and the world of fantasy writing.
I began reworking this project during NaNoWriMo 2017 (which I won with a little over 53,000 words), and took advantage of Preptober to get organized. Through both those months, I found my way back to writing fantasy! And here’s how I did it:
I’m not sure how writers survive without Scrivener, especially those who favor plotting over pantsing. With Scrivener, anything goes, and I have used the cork board option to plan out scenes and chapters with the freedom to move chunks of my writing around without having to copy and pasting. But what’s more, Scrivener provides templates for character development and world building, which are key to tackling fantasy writing. I have split my characters into subgroups, added extra boards with inspiring photos, and even crafted holidays for my fantasy world. Everything stays in one place, and everything is right where I need it, which grants me peace of mind, and allows me to better stay creative while drafting.
I try to think back to a time before my Pinterest boards, and it’s difficult. For as long as I can remember, I have been a visual learner, and crafting these boards has been just as important to my writing process as outlining the novel. When I find myself stuck, I will scroll through my Falling series board, which to some might seem like procrastination, but to me is necessary. This is especially important because my current WIP has a vastly different aesthetic than the novel I’ve spent the past four years creating. I found the act of finding new inspiration to me invigorating and the cleanse I so needed to step from a speculative novel into one filled with fantasy.
3. Chapter Collage:
This is a new tool I found using during NaNoWriMo. Taking the idea of inspiration boards one step further, I created collages for each chapter. Selecting a limited number of images helped me boil down what I was trying to accomplish in each chapter. This worked as extra preparation for the writing, and for me, preparing is always key. Though I haven’t touched BOOK ONE since November, the plan is to return to the Falling series next month. I’ve taken January to detail the rest of my character sketches, prune my outline, and take stock of what I’ve written so far. I will begin February with CHAPTER TEN, and I’ve already created that chapter collage, which I’ve included exclusively for this post! As you will see, I’ve gathered images with main characters, main places, and inspiring quotes to get me in the right frame of mind when I return to this world!
Maybe your process is vastly different from mine. Maybe you don’t yet have a process at all. Either way, I hope you take some comfort in knowing writing fantasy is a journey and an adventure separated from whatever adventures you’re currently crafting!
Copyright: Images on this post (C) Kayla King / Top banner and author banner created by dePepi with (C) Kayla King images.