Show and Tell – Work in Progress

First off, my apologies. I won’t be posting any flash fiction to the blog for a while. My dear novel in progress (whom I affectionately refer to as ‘the beast’) is taking up my creative energy as I inch ever closer to done.

Want to see what progress looks like? Here’s a not so great photo taken on my cell phone:

Novel Edit
It's progress right?

It’s hard to see, but every paper represents a chapter, and every chapter has color coded summaries of each scene taped to it, along with handwritten notes of all the changes I need to make. So if you’re counting, that’s 33 chapters. Yes I’m a geek, and I like to stay organized while I edit.

On Wednesday, I’ll talk about my companion in writing, the “novel bible”, which has made it so much easier to tackle revisions.

How’s life? How’s your writing going?


  1. Thanks to my minor car accident on Tues night, I haven’t done much writing at all (which is bad since I have a writing meeting tonight and I need to bring new pages… {goes into high-pressure mode!}) but I read 3 great books! To me that’s still productive. 🙂

  2. Wow I’m impressed! I can totally see myself doing this when (if! haha) I get up to 33 chapters. Go YOU! I guess one of the great writers of the last century (for the life of me I can’t remember which one) used to pin his chapters along a clothesline in his office. He’d leave it up the entire time he worked on the book. I think you and I might be exactly that visual. 🙂

    1. T.S. Bazelli Author

      I wish I had an office or even a wall big enough. That would be pretty fabulous – if not a clothesline, at least a really big bulletin board. For some reason I need to see it all at once or else I can’t comprehend it. Sounds like we work the same way 😉

  3. Ha ha, had one of those random, unthinking thoughts that was fixed shortly thereafter with a bit of sensibility: “Wow, where does she sleep?” lol (I’m guessing you’ll move all the paper)

    Your beast is big. Bigger than mine was when I did this exercise (You’re not alone!). I was able to put all my scenes/plot points (written in pencil on small strips of paper) on my desk. Was that when I decided to sack the whole thing and start over? I can’t remember.

    My life is going well. Writing could be better. Don’t know if you saw my tweet last night, but I gave up my nightly writing time to go pursue something that looked more interesting. Time for a rap on the knuckles from the Writing Disciplinarian, I guess.

    1. T.S. Bazelli Author

      Sleep? Who needs sleep?! Yeah you’re right, the papers are all in a tidy little stack now.

      Ouch, you decided to toss it and start over? That was a lot of work, but sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and do just that. You’re brave for doing it though.

      Nope didn’t catch you on twitter last night. Tsk tsk, on the procrastination. I expect better of you. j/k sometimes a break is necessary my friend.

      1. Twitter is a black hole of time-sucking doom! Just spent an hour talking to an editor on a public chat. Interesting experience.

        Yeah, it took a while for me to finish my revision but it’s better now.

  4. Very interesting. And I’m interested to hear about your Novel Bible. I keep something similar – but I call it my “Project Bible” rather than “Novel Bible”. (In part that’s because a project is potentially multiple novels, and the project bible is for keeping everything that occurs in the same world/story-sequence together and inline.) So far my “Bible” is all virtual. I have my hand-written notebook, but that’s not for final finished form. The real Bible is kept as a group of interlinked documents (a desktop wiki, basically). That’s something I’ve thought about talking about on my blog – but will be more meaningful as I actually get into writing my novels a little further…

    But this format does make for a very visual way of representing the work in summary format.

    1. T.S. Bazelli Author

      There’s a lot of information to keep track of, and honestly I lose quite a bit of it. My novel bible’s a lot more focused on plot. Most of the other details are unfortunately tracked in messy notes here and there, some on paper, and some virtual.

      I’d like to hear about your project bible, if you ever get a chance.

      1. I intend to write about it on my blog eventually… but like I said I’d like to get to a point where I have more to talk about. My writing time (and especially my time for doing work on my novel projects) is low enough right now that the two project bibles I have open at the moment are a bit thin…

  5. Interesting picture. Best of luck with your revisions and I’m looking forward to your description of how you keep your novel bible. I’m starting on my own novel, and I may “borrow” some ideas as I evolve my own way of keeping track of the information.

    1. Sounds like it’s pop quiz time!

      The 34th mysterious sheet contains:
      a) an epilogue, crafted entirely in rhyming couplets.
      b) a note of congratulations I’ve written to myself, meant to be read when I have finished this novel.
      c) the location of pirate treasure.
      d) discarded scenes.

      I’ll let you decide. Chances are… you’re right. 😉

      1. I swear it had better be ALL of those.

        The letter to yourself actually isn’t actually a bad idea – at the beginning of writing a new novel you should write two sealed letters to yourself. One for successful completion, saying yourself how wonderful you are. And to be only opened in case you give up – this one will remind you just how disappointed you are with self. I am honestly going to do that on the next novel.

      2. That’s an excellent idea. There have been times when I thought of giving up, and I thought I’d never get to the end. That might help get through those rough patches. I think I’ll try that for the next book.

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