Wheee! Posting my Sven progress on Fated made me think about story pacing and how the level of backstory and detail is dependent upon overall story length. For instance in a novella, you have less space for character development and detail so it’s important to use guidepost scenes to do the work. In category, you have more room but still not as much as when you’re looking at 90 – 100K.
It occured to me last night as I was writing that I’m at the stage where I keep note of this stuff mentally and I sort of have these little alarms in my head – okay by this point I need to have laid the groundwork for the dark moment, by this stage I need to have the main storyline well developed – that sort of thing. I know my ending will be X long so I keep that in mind as I hit the middle. I don’t keep notes really although I do outline for the books I sell on partial and proposal. But over the last years, I’ve developed a mix of plotting and pantsing. I write as loose a synopsis as I can – essentially hit the highlights of the bones of the story and then fill in the colors and lines as I go. This enables me to have the freedom I love when writing to let the story take over, but also keeps me to timelines and schedules and *most of the time* helps keep me from wandering off track.
Now I am a huge believer in the idea that there is NO one true way. Every author has what works for her and she might tinker with it over time and even across certain books. My way works for me. Another author might do it more efficiently and better, but each of us has our own process.
And now, off to do laundry and hope the sleet outside does not make its mind to go into full snow. Yes I said snow. Yes, it’s March 29. Gah!! And then I shall finish up this scene in Fated later on tonight.