I'm about to begin writing my third novel, which will be known here as Vix. I've been outlining, brainstorming and researching for a while now. I've profiled my characters and developed my setting. (By the way, my setting is THE PLANET VENUS!)
I've also made an important realization about my previous book, Safira. I think it lacked energy. I focused a lot on character development, and this is probably why I love the characters so much. However, the plot could have been more exciting. The plot in that book was driven strictly by the characters. The setting had no hand in anything that happened, and there wasn't anything close to deus ex machina or even coincidence. Perhaps what that book needs is a healthy dose of serendipity.
Needless to say, I don't intend to write another plotfully lazy book. I've thought a lot about the plot of Vix and I've even broken the book into three acts. This is how Suzanne Collins writes, and I figured it couldn't hurt to imitate her. Yesterday I outlined the first act. My Excel spreadsheet includes the following:
- Short description of the scene
- What exposition is required to understand this scene?
- What emotions do I want this scene to invoke?
- How will I invoke these emotions?
- Which characters are present in this scene?
- What is each character's goal?
- Do they succeed or fail?
I have a few empty cells to fill in tomorrow. And on Friday, I begin writing.