Tuesday, December 22, 2009

NaNoFiMo 2009: The Index Card Stage for Bad Company

After my first NaNoFiMo writing session last Sunday, I turned back to reading library books. I'm mining them for story ideas I can use. And I think I've got a whole bunch of good ones now. In this tweet, for instance, I announce: "The role of Keyser Soze will now be played by Blackwater." You read that right: instead of being merely the giant monster in the disaster movie of anticorporate political thrillers, Dictel is now playing the Satan of gang bosses in the form of an evil military corporation. Got it? There's more crazy ideas where that came from. And now I've finally collected enough new story ideas that I'm starting to feel that the plot of Bad Company will actually hang together. So now I'm ready to begin the long-delayed index card stage. The cards are ready.

Over the past two years since I started writing Bad Company for NaNoWriMo '07, I've built up quite a deck of index cards. I've used them to plot out scenes, apparently to no avail, since the plot still hasn't come together. Now I've started flipping through the deck, separating the useful ones from the ones I don't need anymore. Once I've removed the obsolete cards from the deck, I'll return to the AugNoWriMo '09 version of the BadCo file, match scenes with cards, and write new cards for scenes without cards. Then I can lay out my cards on the living room floor and figure out where the remaining plot holes are. Then I'll take my list of new story ideas, place them on their own deck of cards (written in a different color of ink), and then insert new cards with the new story ideas wherever they fit. And, of course, I'll use this stage to fill in the remaining plot holes.

The next step, of course, will be to start writing. But I can't start writing till I have an idea what to write. That's why I have to go through the index card stage.

Then I'll write those 30,000 words that will give me my first NaNoFiMo victory...

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