Writer's Road Recap: Ideas to Words

Here is an abbreviated recap of last week's #WritersRoad chat on getting your idea into words: 

Heather McCorkle  The best way I've found to tackle the block of idea into words is to have a plan, a direction that I know the story is going. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  I used to hate writing outlines but now I love them. They help me get the idea into words. Never thought I'd say that! #WritersRoad

Lori Prima  to @HeatherMcCorkle I like to sketch out any fragments of scenes or dialogue when I first am working on a new idea #writersroad

TS Tate (Tee)  to @HeatherMcCorkle I actually wrote a new one today. I love them. Make me really think about where I'm going. #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  to @teetate Me too. Outlines help me focus and keep me going when I would otherwise stop. #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  I the most important factor in getting the job done, is doing the work. Don't let the idea linger, WRITE IT. #writersroad

Matthew Wilbur  I do this weird thing where I write a couple chapters (or more) and if the piece seems to be working, then I outline. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @Nightveil I'd go crazy if I did that because I'd be constantly rewriting it! #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @Nightveil Sometimes you just have to get the juices flowing though, so I totally understand. #WritersRoad

Matthew Wilbur  to @HeatherMcCorkle This may be the problem with the current WIP. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  Research can help motivate me to get words on the paper. It also sparks new chapter ideas & deepens the plot. #WritersRoad

Lori Prima  to @HeatherMcCorkle and  @Nightveil If I don't eventually outline, the plot bunnies get waaaayyy out of hand. #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  Do you ever make up playlists for your novels? Sometimes I've found the right music gets the words flowing. #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  If you're 'stuck' and can't get past it, try relying on some craft books to help u think abt ur story in a new light...#writersroad

Matthew Wilbur  to @HeatherMcCorkle This is not something I've done. I don't think most of my music is conducive to writing. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @Nightveil LOL! I know the feeling. That's why I go for music that makes me think of the book, like a soundtrack for it. #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  I would highly recommend 'Plot and Structure' by @jamesscottbell (I know, I always rec that one). #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  What would the soundtrack for your book sound like? Who would the artists be? Those should be your inspiration. #WritersRoad

Ebony McKenna  I need complete silence. I need to hear my character's think. :-) #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  Pictures and art help inspire me. I like to find or take pictures that inspire certain scenes. Helps so much! #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  I often close my eyes to envision a scene, hear my characters dialogue in my head, wierd I know, but it works. #WritersRoad

Matthew Wilbur  I've finally got my head mostly around Scrivener. Still feels odd sometimes, but I'm getting it. #WritersRoad

Matthew Wilbur  to @HeatherMcCorkle The movie in your head. Not all that weird. If you can see it you're doing something right. :) #WritersRoad

Matthew Wilbur  to @HeatherMcCorkle It's a word processing program, but the basic metaphor is working on pieces of the doc rather than the whole. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @Nightveil Sounds like something that would get me jumbled up. I use a table of contents and so I can go easily to chapters. #WritersRoad

Matthew Wilbur  to @teetate  and @HeatherMcCorkle For me it's the "focus on one chapter at a time" aspect. It's quirky but I'm getting used to it. #WritersRoad

Lori Prima  to @HeatherMcCorkle @Nightveil I use it and am a fan. However, I also find myself on many nights using basic word proc pgms #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  to @Nightveil In essence, using a TOC in Word would allow me to work on whatever chapter I wanted & not get lost. #WritersRoad

Brenda Corey Dunne  to @HeatherMcCorkle @Nightveil I've thought about it too, but am a big fan of printing off and separating into chunks. #WritersRoad

Lori Prima  to @HeatherMcCorkle I am right there with you. I sometimes find myself "acting" out the dialogue. #writersroad

Matthew Wilbur  to @teetate @HeatherMcCorkle Essentially. But you can move chapters around and it will eventually compile them and export them... #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  What are some of the biggest obstacles you face in moving from idea to story? #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  to @teetate I always want that first page to be perfect. It's tough to get inspired for just the right beginning. #WritersRoad

Brenda Corey Dunne  to @HeatherMcCorkle Time. Lots of Time. or Lack thereof @teetate #Writersroad

Matthew Wilbur  to @teetate Where to start. Mid-scene, beginning of scene, end of scene? Where do I place the reader in the beginning? #WritersRoad

Brenda Corey Dunne  to @HeatherMcCorkle And not just time to write. Time to THINK about writing. To prepare mentally. #Writersroad

Heather McCorkle  What helps you get words on the page once you have your idea for your novel? #WritersRoad

Ebony McKenna  Took me ages to fall asleep last night, so chatted to characters who gave me GREAT ideas. #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @EbonyMcKenna That's a fantastic idea. I think I may try that tonight. #WritersRoad

Brenda Corey Dunne On the other side, thinking too much can be a hindrance to putting words on the page. :) #WritersRoad

Lori Prima  time and motivation, to be honest. So many competing priorities. I am my worst enemy. #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  to @teetate SO, would I be crazy to work on two books at once? #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  to @HeatherMcCorkle Well, I'd say complete one draft of one WIP, then on your break from it, work on the second. #writersroad IMHO anyway

Heather McCorkle  to @teetate You're right, I know. It's just so hard with this one burning a hole in my imagination. ;) #WritersRoad

Ebony McKenna  to @teetate @HeatherMcCorkle I do that a bit, so that when I'm in one WIP, I'm in that zone. #writersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  to @HeatherMcCorkle Well then, instead of cheating on your current WIP, jot down the idea for the second and then wait. #writersroad

Heather McCorkle  to @teetate Fabulous idea. I've been researching and jotting things on characters down already. Perhaps I'll do a loose outline. #WritersRoad

Tracy Clark  to @teetate I'm totally working on multiple things at once! *crazy brain is cray cray* @HeatherMcCorkle #writersroad

Ebony McKenna  I used to jump from one WIP to the next and back, but it was me finding a way to not get it done. #WritersRoad

Ebony McKenna  I get THE BEST ideas for new stories when I'm about 80% done with current WIP. Oh the siren song! #WritersRoad

Heather McCorkle  to @EbonyMcKenna So true. It's a sure way to halt progress on the other. #WritersRoad

Brenda Corey Dunne to @TracyClark_TLC @teetate @HeatherMcCorkle I think I've got four ms's on the go right now. Need to buckle down and finish one... #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  to @HeatherMcCorkle I keep a little red notebook w/ me at all times to write down lines, plots, chars, etc. #writersroad

TS Tate (Tee) to @HeatherMcCorkle I also keep one on my bedside table bc my dreams are vivid & slightly insane. #writersroad

Ebony McKenna I end up using the notes app on the phone sometimes, to jot down ideas. #WritersRoad Why don't I keep a notebook on me???

Matthew Wilbur  I think my biggest problem is that I write at work *all the time*, by hand. Don't want to do it when I get home. :/ #WritersRoad

TS Tate (Tee)  Bottom line: Get the idea on page. Make small goals & meet them & never, ever stop doing the work! #writersroad

Tracy Clark  I keep a folder/notebook for each project. Put notes/napkins/random stuff in them so I won't forget. Organization is my goddess.#writersroad

TS Tate (Tee)  First drafts should be ugly. Don't let them hinder you from FINISHING the story. Keep. Writing. #writersroad


  1. Thanks for the recap. Wish I loved outlining too.

  2. Great recap. Thanks for sharing the various tips for dealing with ideas and keeping the writing flowing.

  3. Thanks for the recap!I miss the chats so much. Hopefully, I'll be able to make one during my vacation, we'll see... :)


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