Sometimes you just gotta get methodical. Novels are big and unruly, but chaos does not need to reign. Here are 15 framing questions that can help you discover and define what you what to write. I’ll use one of my books to give examples.
Questions 1-4. The main “handles” readers will use to discover your book.
1. What genre? Some aspiring writers are surprisingly conflicted about what type of story to write. My only advice is to read in likely genres. Read a lot. Learn what stories you adore.
For my book, the answer to the genre question was Fantasy. But there are so many types of fantasy, and some form popular subgenres such as gaslamp, sword and sorcery, grimdark, folkloric. So we drill down. (For examples of types of fantasy, see my post Landscapes of Fantasy.)
2. What kind of fantasy? In the case of the book I had in mind, it was historical fantasy with psi-powers. Read More…