Several of you have expressed interest in my Show Flake Method project The link to Randy Ingermanson's description of this method for creating a plan for a novel is http://www.advancedfictionwriting.com/art/snowflake.php. The greatest news is that Bob is joining Bill and me. He has been wanting to try young people's fiction and this very structured method appeals to him - actually more than it does to Bill and me, and he has a great first step.
The description of the first step of the Snow Flake Method - from the web site I referenced, is:
Step 1) Take an hour and write a one-sentence summary of your novel. Something like this: "A rogue physicist travels back in time to kill the apostle Paul." (This is the summary for my first novel, Transgression.) The sentence will serve you forever as a ten-second selling tool. This is the big picture, the analog of that big starting triangle in the snowflake picture.
For myself, I was getting frustrated - am so much the "seat of the pants" writer, but I took a long walk yesterday and focused on the method and something clicked. I came up with three rough first steps and then realised that all three have the same theme in a way - the same reason fro being. So, even if I don't know what story I want to tell or how it will go I know WHY I want to tell a story right now, and for that I thank the snowflake. Here are my three roughies. I'd very much appreciate that anyone who reads this vote on which is most appealing.
My theme or purpose for writing is something like "In the early twenty first century people of different ages and backgrounds connect and pool understandings and strengths to face challenges."
Option One - Working Title Clinic Two middle aged therapists risk danger and personal failure when they open a clinic for the uninsured in a tough neighborhood.
Option two - Working Title Ghost A fourth grader, her recovering addict father, a young kindergarten teacher, a retiring janitor, and the school librarian work together to decode messages from an obstreperous ghost in order to find hidden money needed to save the school's music program.
Option three - A divorced nurse discovers purpose through lost stories while deciding what to do with her family home in a small Texas town.