Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Wizardly Writing Wednesdays - Rankus on Before You Write

You're back. Knew you would be. Who could pass up on my brilliant writing advice? Yeah, that's what I thought. 

And I can boast of being such a great writer because my teacher said I have quite an imagination. 

So there.

 


Today, I'm going to talk about one very important step in beginning writing. What all us great authors do BEFORE we actually write.

First, you need to get an idea. And not just any idea. Don't say to yourself, I will write about chasing knights around the castle.

That's not interesting enough. But it's a start.

CHASING KNIGHTS

Yet, it has no clarity. And there are many things about chasing knights that a dragon can write about. So we need to focus on the important details. First, allow yourself to brainstorm some things about chasing knights, or whatever your topic is. Allow your mind to just flow and don't think about the ideas, just write or record them as they come. 


Brainstorming CHASING KNIGHTS:
HOW TO CHASE AND NOT GET YELLED AT BY THE QUEEN
HOW TO DO A SNEAK ATTACK WHEN THEY ARE LEAST EXPECTING YOU
AVOIDING THE POINTY STICK THEY THINK WILL SCARE YOU. WHEN IT DON'T.
WHAT TO DO WITH KNIGHTS WHEN YOU CATCH THEM
(LEAVING THEM ON HIGH TOWERS IS JUST FUNNEST) 
STRATEGIES FOR CHASING KNIGHTS EVERY DRAGONS SHOULD KNOW


So, there you go, that's what I got while brainstorming. 

Next, we would pick our favorite idea and start breaking it down into detailed thoughts. Let's take, "How to chase and not get yelled at by Queen"

-- chase while she's napping.
-- only chase knights who are out of sight of Queen's library window.
-- chase in the early morning or late evening. 
-- check to see if she's engrossed in a great book and you will have hours to chase to your heart's content. 

You get the picture? 

Here's some things to keep in mind while you are developing your ideas:

1. Make sure your details offer strong support of your idea. No wandering thoughts that have nothing to do with staying out of trouble when chasing knights. 

2. Your details need to be authentic and realistic. You can't use Wizard Lexiconi's charms to catch a knight. It's not fair and it always seems to backfire and you don't want your tail to turn purple for three weeks. Just saying. 

3. Keep your ideas balanced. Satisfy the reader's curiosity, but don't overwhelm them with too much information.  

Ask yourself these questions:
What topic will I write on?
What information do I need to explain this topic?
Do I have enough information to say what I want?
Will I be able to express myself clearly? 

Most important.... Will it be interesting? 


So there's where we start. Good stuff, right? 

Heeeyyy... look the Queen has found another great book. Peeerrrfect!
Well, later gators.
Rankus O. Dragon: 4th grade Extraordinaire. 

2 comments:

Joanna said...

Wizardly wise advice here, Jackie. Lots of fun and very helpful, thank you!

Jackie Castle said...

Thanks for stopping by. Glad you found Rankus helpful.