Taking inspiration and much needed (and generously given) assistance from Jade Park, I decided to work on plotting my magnum opus. I studied several books, including Martha Alderson’s Blockbuster Plots Pure & Simple, Nancy Kress’s Beginnings, Middles, and Ends. Then I pulled out a stack of large newsprint, and started plotting.
I worried at first it might be awkward using this gigantic piece of paper. On the contrary, the new format was liberating, and the ball-point slid along the newsprint deliciously. I potted one of my character arcs. I made a list of scenes. I scribbled down notes. Now I’m contemplating writing a whole short story on a sheet. It’s simply fantastic, because it doesn’t feel like work, it feels like play. I never realized how constricting a computer screen could feel, or how limiting a keyboard is. With a keyboard, you can only type letters. Pen in hand, you can make all kinds of marks.