Last October, when I was outlining The Clockwork Experiment, my outline grew to be 23 pages long, the details of which were mostly edited out. It was all layers of bullets using Microsoft Word's Outline mode.
This year, I intended to go in with nothing but the submission packet (query, premise sentence, and synopsis) that I wrote up for it for my Creative Writing exam last spring.
Then I found this, and I've been using that outlining spreadsheet. Each of the different steps comes with its own sheet within the book (term for the overall spreadsheet), as well as its own deadline! I'm on step three now, which is basic character names, motivations, goals, and obstacles, which isn't due until the 14th. (Side note: That "premise sentence" turned out to be the length of a paragraph. I'm good at informative dependent clauses, which maybe isn't the greatest talent in clear and coherent writing).
The thing is, since this is a re-write of something I did in 6th grade, I already have half a cast of characters ready-made. Since I have to change most of their names for various reasons (such as copying off of other books I've read), and that I had already done some name changing in 6th and 7th grade, some characters have gone through 3 or 4 names since their creation, which leaves me hopelessly confused (as well as grateful for the character page in the outline book).
I've had to pull out the folder with the original pages in it just to find the names (and existence) of certain people.
I feel like a scholar going through ancient documents or something, and trying to write a book about her findings. Except I wrote the "ancient documents."
Something I've learned about my 6th grade self: I sucked at originality. Practically everything was a poorly-concealed rip-off of a book or movie I loved at the time (most of which I still love). Maybe now I've just consumed enough media that my rip-offs blend together enough that they seem original.
I really wasn't going to outline, but it's turning out to be incredibly helpful.
Besides, I'm having fun! :D
Views on "The Quad N: New Beginnings" = 7. One of which I know is Audrey's. Who else saw it, and what did you think?