Sound Boarding Your Story
When I’m working on a novel, my husband or friends turns into a sound board. Talking out loud or having to tell your story out loud to someone else is a very useful tool. If you’re story is still jumbled in your head, then it comes out that way and whomever you ask will have that confused look on your face not wanting to hurt your feelings. I suggest you find someone honest or even with a different taste in books because your story is fresh for them.
Some of my breakthroughs in plot have come from telling my story out loud. The best way to explain this change, is that it gets a different set of hamsters turning the cognitive wheels in my head. This is the same reasoning behind authors writing by hand instead of typing. There’s a different muscle memory or slight change to a process that can give you new lightbulb moments.
When you’re stuck or you feel something is missing, change your method. This is like switching neural networks or synapse connections through different sets of muscle memory. Some cognitive wheels may slower on certain days, so try another network.
If that doesn’t make sense, then try what I’ve heard from other authors. Print out what you have, find a stranger and read it out loud. You will start to hear and see your writing plot holes. You’ll find the mistakes in your raw writing. Don’t be afraid of criticism. I’ve heard of some best selling authors who print out their scripts and drive to a quiet location with their spouse and read every page out loud before they begin the editing process. They continue this process until the final edit is complete.
Based on experience, I should point out that the editing process can take longer than it took to write your book. Editing or helping other people edit their work has taken me at least 2 to 3 times longer than the book writing process (If you sat down for long periods of time with breaks for sleeping, eating, and daily chores). Patience is a virtue when it comes to the final stages of publishing a book.
I know many authors start out shy when it comes to sharing their own work, but you need to get it over it. You can tell a published author from the someday writers because those who are published aren’t afraid to self-promote. Yes, we get nervous before a reading or public appearance but we still do it because we know how my PR is important. Starting sharing out loud now to get over social anxiety butterflies and you’ll be more prepared for future talks or award speeches.
Follow as I post on my progress throughout the month and share the experience.