Is Your Novel’s Backstory Big Enough?. << Read article by K.M. Weiland
I am so happy I finally finished most of my outline for my novel. Now I can begin the actual exciting writing process.
So after reading Mrs. Dalloway, here’s an excerpt of a biography for Virginia Woolf:
The Virginia Woolf Society of Great Britain is a non-profit organisation which aims to raise the profile of Virginia Woolf and promote the reading and discussion of her works. Formed in August 1998 the Society is supported by an Executive Council of elected volunteers. (Read more about the Society’s Constitution). An Editorial Committee produces the Virginia Woolf Bulletin three times a year (January, May and September), as well as a number of other publications. Woolf-related events and talks, open to members only, are held throughout the year.
Adeline Virginia Stephen was born on 25 January 1882 in London. Her father, Leslie Stephen (1832-1904), was a man of letters (and first editor of the Dictionary of National Biography) who came from a family distinguished for public service (part of the ‘intellectual aristocracy’ of Victorian England). Her mother, Julia (1846-95), from whom Virginia inherited her looks, was the daughter and niece of the six beautiful Pattle sisters (Julia Margaret Cameron was the seventh: not beautiful but the only one remembered today). Both parents had been married before: her father to the daughter of the novelist, Thackeray, by whom he had a daughter Laura (1870-1945) who was intellectually backward; and her mother to a barrister, Herbert Duckworth (1833-70), by whom she had three children, George (1868-1934), Stella (1869-97), and Gerald (1870-1937). Julia and Leslie Stephen had four children: Vanessa (1879-1961), Thoby (1880-1906), Virginia (1882-1941), and Adrian (1883-1948). All eight children lived with the parents and a number of servants at 22 Hyde Park Gate, Kensington.
Read more here
So as a writer (and as many writers out there must already know), it sucks when you get to a point in your draft and you become completely stumped with what to do next. I personally have had that happened to me many times and with no luck of being able to get over it, the draft always becomes garbage and I always end up starting the cycle all over again. Only that was until I learned just a year ago the advantages of outlining your novel beforehand in order to prevent having a moment just like the one I described. I used a book called Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success by K.M. Weiland to learn the process of outlining my novel and being able to plot everything out without any questions later on. I was able to actually finish an entire first draft of my novel using the tips and tricks that Weiland described in this book. I am grateful for finding this book because it taught me all that I needed to know about outlining a novel.
I know now I will never take on any new writing projects without outlining/plotting it all out first! Trust me, it really helps knowing exactly what you are going to write, knowing every major plot point in the story, and having had mapped out how your characters are going to get from point A to point B. It saves time in the long run, and it prevents having that moment where you are completely clueless on what to write next. Now you will know because you already mapped out the entire novel.
I just wanted to share this great find and help any other aspiring novelist out there be able to start and finish a draft. Here is the link: Outlining Your Novel: Map Your Way to Success [Kindle Edition]
Mrs. Dalloway is a novel by Virginia Woolf and it of course is among the most well known literary works from the modernist movement. It is a very complex and yet intriguing novel. Woolf uses the technique “stream of consciousness” to get inside each of the characters psyche and to tell the story through their individual consciousness. Using this technique creates very deep pov for each character and as well allows for the readers to become immersed into this character. It adds a sense of psychological realism within the story and it’s characters. As a writer, I have never used this technique before and I have not seen it used often, but Woolf executed it flawlessly in this great Modernist novel. It adds so many layers to the story and depth to the characters. It gives the readers a broad perspective of the characters and they really get to ‘know’ and connect with the characters.
Read this compelling novel here: Mrs. Dalloway
So I had to reread this poem by T.S. Eliot again for my English literature class. I read it just last semester for one of my Creative Writing courses and so I was already with interpretations ready for this discussion. It’s a poem written in the modernist movement and it definitely captures this. Without going into what it’s about (assuming readers have read the poem), I find the theme of the poem very interesting and the fact that the poem is also written in both past and future tense adds to the speaker’s discord. The poem can be difficult to interpret because of this, readers may struggle trying to understand the symbolic meaning of the imagery used and whatnot.
The speaker in this poem struggles with making definite choices (specifically with approaching an attractive woman) and seems to allow himself to always say “I will wait until tomorrow” but he is also realizing the more he waits, he is also growing older and his chances are becoming dimmer. It makes me think of some young people these days who always wait and wait and never actually get around to doing anything they say they are going to do. They always over think things and come up with some excuse to delay it (just as the speaker does in this poem). The poem also seems to address that the speaker doesn’t feel as if he can be apart of the new modernist movement and this fear is also what keeps him from approaching the woman. He seems to suffer from a modern societal disillusionment.
Read it here:
Let us go then, you and I,
When the evening is spread out against the sky
Like a patient etherized upon a table;
Let us go, through certain half-deserted streets,
The muttering retreats
Of restless nights in one-night cheap hotels
And sawdust restaurants with oyster-shells:
Streets that follow like a tedious argument
Of insidious intent
To lead you to an overwhelming question. . .
Oh, do not ask, “What is it?”
Let us go and make our visit.
In the room the women come and go
Talking of Michelangelo.
The yellow fog that rubs its back upon the window-panes
The yellow smoke that rubs its muzzle on the window-panes
Licked its tongue into the corners of the evening
Lingered upon the pools that stand in drains,
Let fall upon its back the soot that falls from chimneys,
Slipped by the terrace, made a sudden leap,
And seeing that it was a soft October night
Curled once about the house, and fell asleep.
Two weeks ago, I got my hair trimmed, layered in the front, and blow-dried in such a way that it actually looked pretty good. I know it must have looked all right, because my grandmother, with whom I was dining that night, said, "Oh, my! Don't you look beautiful!"
I tried unsuccessfully to brush wispy bangs out of my eye and replied with a grimace, "Take it in while you can, Grandma, because this is the last time it's going to look this good until the next time I have to get it trimmed."