Could you give some tips on chapter pacing? Specifically, I'm wondering if it's too confusing to have chapters pick up immediately or very shortly after the last left off. (I'm writing YA and really doubt anybody wants 12k word chapters, but of course I don't want my readers to get lost.)
There’s a few different ways to handle pacing. Personally, I’ve put my own twist on the scene/sequel method. Google “scene sequel”, read through a bunch of those results, and see what speaks to you.
Since I struggle with pacing, I came up with my own hack because
I don’t write in order, and,
I hate writing formal outlines.
It’s a combo of scene/sequel and good old plot diagram because overstuffed chapters are a symptom of an overstuffed plot for me. I’m going to use my screenplay as an example because it’s what I’m working on, but this also works for novels and short stories.
First, think about how many pages or words you want your piece to have. It’s a little different for every genre, so use what’s appropriate for your story. In my case, I wanted my script to be 94 pages, so I made three folders for the beginning, middle and end, and included a target page count.
Yes, those numbers add up to 101 pages, but Scrivener adds a lot of white space it removed when it compiles screenplays so I accounted for that.
Next, I knew my inciting event should happen within the first 5 pages and the midpoint would have to be around page 47, and so I put little flags in to represent them.
If you’re writing a story, you might want to break down that first chapter a bit more so you can know you need to hit the inciting event by say, page 4.
With those guidelines in place, I write. When I want to check my progress, I select the pages and look at the page count in the bottom, using the flags as the measuring stick.
If you don’t use Scrivener, you can do something similar in your word processor of choice. Make a bit of text like ===END STARTS HERE Page 120=== or ===MIDPOINT STARTS HERE 75=== OR using headings/styles if you’re comfortable with those. Whatever you choose, be consistent! When you want to check where you are, “find” (command or control F depending if you’re on Mac or PC) the ===, and it’ll take you to that page.
Page count would likely be easier if you’re using this as a guide for your rough draft, but word count may be easier if you’re using this to generate your revised draft.
Don’t be afraid to experiment and see what works for you.
Study tip:Draw diagrams to visualise difficult concepts.
Anyone in my biology class knows that I am seriously struggling with the concept of osmoregulation. To help me understand it a little better (because I seriously have no idea what the flipping heck it is), I decided to draw up a diagram, which is something I do whenever I don’t understand something so that it’s easier to visualise. But it can never be any old diagram - I always have to make it a little pretty. Also, I know I can’t draw fish, but let’s keep the attention on the fact that I now understand why freshwater fish diffuse salt into their environment. Now to draw diagrams for every other dot point in the biology syllabus!
I want to hear the story of the not so charming tad darker thingy!
PRESENTING THE MAN IN THE WEB
Photoshop recreation of what he would have looked like ^
Concept art ^
SO who is this guy? Well according to many the man in the web was apart of the old spider web scene (The one before the 2007 redo of the mansion, it used to be where the endless stairs are now.) back when our mansion first opened. Some say he was never in our mansion, while others claim he was indeed apart of our mansion for a brief time. If he was he was a skeleton caught in a giant web facing guests. According to mansion legacy cast member Ginger (she worked there for both the opening of the Magic Kingdom and Epcot and remained at the mansion for over 30 years) the man in the web was indeed there at the beginning of the mansion. However only during cast previews.
According to Ginger he was taken out of the mansion not cause he was too scary, but because much like a famous hat box ghost he didn’t look up to the standard of everything else. So he was removed sometime after, however when that after is remains a mystery. Could he have been there for guests briefly? No one knows. But he is very much a real thing, old diagrams and charts for the mansion show that his show scene was labeled
Man in web. SO there you have it, our mansion does have something akin to ol hattie. We got a dead guy in a web
Róisín and François first meet in the snowy white expanse of Antarctica. Their shared desire to explore the world has brought them here, but to do so both have left family and loved ones behind.
As we loop back through their lives, glimpsing each of them only when a comet is visible in the skies above, we see how their paths cross as they come closer and closer to this moment. Theirs are stories filled with love and hope and heartbreak, that show how strangers can be connected and ghosts can be real, and the world can be as lonely or as beautiful as the comets themselves.
The Bayeux Tapestry plays a significant part in the story so we felt embroidery was the perfect medium for our jacket design. We commissioned Chloe Giordano to create the artwork, and asked her to depict François and his mother beneath a sky full of celestial activity. The comets on the jacket are inspired by old astronomical diagrams, including Halley’s Comet which appears throughout the story.
Chloe kindly took photos of the embroidery throughout the process. You can see more of her beautiful work here
The Comet Seekers is published by Harvill Secker in August 2016
Translation: “#The Mystic Nine# Nine doors flourishing to celebrate the new year; Old Ten’s welfare package diagram to wish everyone a happy New Year. Third day of the Chinese Lunar New Year; The Second Master is offering sacrifices to ancestor Gods, to watch over everyone’s health. Today it is okay to sleep in and wake up late; Old Ten is going back to sleep again~”
Based on a prompt from lairofailiasfox: Ahem. I heard you said that you were still taking prompts *clears throat* College AU where Rey is a student of both Kylo and Hux and/or AU where Rey is the Empress (since she is the descendant of Palpatine) and Hux and Kylo serve her (in more ways than one ;) ). These probably aren’t the best ones I’ve come up with so far so please forgive me.
((got a little too invested whoops/also i have no idea what i am doing))
Two weeks ago, if you’d told Rey that Ben Solo gave the best head a girl could find in the lower 48, she’d have laughed at you. Ben Solo, her awkward, slightly eccentric Art History prof? Romanesque architecture enthusiast? That guy? Not likely.
It had been Hux’s fault, of course, for introducing them. They go way back, him and Rey. Freshman fall, so wide-eyed, so painfully, literally fresh. Hux, the unerring hand, the man who always knew precisely what he wanted. Who always got precisely what he wanted.
They’d sort of fallen into it, tongues peeking from between teeth, flushed, secret gazes in the banal fluorescent lighting of the Poli Sci lecture hall. First week, Hux was teaching her basic structures of democracy. Third week, he was teaching her how to take a cock, stifled groans in the shadows of an unused classroom. It was every fucking cliché in every piece of pulp fiction Rey had ever heard of, and she loved it.