Saturday, July 13, 2013

A Peek Beneath the Duct Tape: Sleepwalkers, Chapter 4

First, the only thing I'm prepared to say right now about the Wizard/Shara subplot is that a certain typo that you might think you spotted isn't a typo. All will be revealed next week. This Peek - just like this chapter of Sleepwalkers - is mainly concerned with Paul.

Most of the characters in my stories share aspects of my personality, and Paul's behavior in this chapter shows how much he's like me. He has this crazy mix of deer-in-headlights panic, good short-term planning, childlike overconfidence, soft-heartedness that you just know will cause trouble down the line, and then panic again when he realizes he was even more overconfident than he thought. I know I wouldn't do any better in his situation because his actions and reactions are the ones I think I'd make - if I was on top of my game, and of course I might not be. It might be deer-in-headlights from the moment I Awoke until the moment Aimee called the Peacekeepers in to kill me. Anyway, thank goodness for Zane, who also contains some of my personality traits, although badassery isn't one of them.

Now here's a little gift for people who like digging into all behind-the-scenes material they can get their hands on. I haven't always outlined my EMC stories, but the longer I go on, and the more complex my stories become, the more I need to outline them. For "Sleepwalkers," the need was so extreme that I created a separate "Outline" document which ended up being longer than most of my stories themselves (I had a separate "Timeline" document, too, God help me). Maybe that sounds like overkill, but you try writing something with this many plot twists and keeping all the details strictly inside your head!

Anyway I thought I'd give you a taste of what my outlining looks like, using Chapter 4 as my example because this one took an absolutely insane amount of plotting. I had to know who was on which team, when that team entered the dorm, whose team was next into the dorm, when Paul would choose to Wake each Big Gun, and so on. It was a nightmare - but kind of a fun one, I have to admit. And once I'd done all that work, I had to share it with you just so I can brag about it. ;-P


P.S.: Yes, a few details in this outline are different from what I actually wrote. You should have seen the earlier versions of the outline!


Uzobono said...

Ok so thrall :P, WOW! Now I do have to admit m/d doesn't *actually* do much for me. Actually a male protagonist *normally* doesn't click for whatever reason, *but* this is a definite exception. I have *so* many thoughts and musings on this story so far, but I'm just gonna hold on to them until it's a *touch* deeper into the story. (Also I'll copy this to the garden just 'cause ;p).

thrall said...

Thanks! I really like Paul, myself, so I'm glad you like him too. And I appreciate your passing on the good word to the Garden. :-)

fembotheather said...

Your outlines are much prettier than mine. :)

Dash-o-Salt said...
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