“Story Engineering”, Larry Brooks

Glad I’ve read this before embarking on the sequel!

I was one of those novice writers that wrote my first manuscript using the organic drafting method rather than a well-defined plan that Larry Brooks encourages in this excellent guide to writing fiction.

I don’t regret doing that for one minute primarily because it both taught me a lot but also confirmed to me that I had a “story” that could be written. Yes, I’ve worked through 3 significant re-writes and a number of minor edits, having now probably written the best part of 1,000 pages for what will end up being a 350 page novel.

However, I’ve already starting using many of the principles outlined in this book for the sequel and am finding it both extremely challenging as well as in some way comforting as I grapple with a multi-layered structure. Yes, I am a little worried that it may become to formulaic and limit the characters from directing the progress of the novel which is what really happened in book 1, however, everybody needs discipline, and what this book brings is a sets of principles that will help keep my characters in line but also allow them to flourish and produce what I expect to be an even better outcome.

If you’re new to fiction writing, or experienced but challenged to re-invent your process, I can’t recommend “Story Engineering” enough.

NB. This was the first Kindle version of a book I’ve read completely via my ipad. I still very much prefer a hardcopy but I think I can get used to reading certain books electronically.

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