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First Draft in 30 Days : A Novel Writer's System for Building a Complete and Cohesive Manuscript(Paperback) - 2005 Edition Paperback – 2005
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According to her bio, she's written over twenty books, including such diverse genres as romance, mystery/police procedural, suspense, thriller, paranormal, and action/ adventure. Perhaps even more impressive is her planning acumen. Wiesner is always two, three novels ahead of the game, thanks to her formatted outline.
Many writers either can't or don't want to outline their novels in advance (See Tony Hillerman, for instance). Wiesner couldn't either at first until she developed the formatted outline. Wiesner refers to the formatted outline as the first draft of the book. When she revises, she revises the outline rather than suffer through countless drafts of the manuscript.
This woman is a real left-brainer. She plans virtually everything, including time to let the manuscript marinate. The appendices include character, setting, plot, and research outlines as well as a place to write potential interview questions for possible experts and your characters. Her story evolution worksheet is almost as helpful as the formatted outline.
And-oh,yes-I almost forgot Chapter eight. It's for us poor shleps who already have a completed manuscript with all kinds of holes. She shows us how to use her system to salvage the mess.
As one who has endured twenty-three drafts on his first effort, Wiesner's FIRST DRAFT IN 30 DAYS is a godsend.
The book does a good job of showing the skills every beginning writer needs, from research & broad outlining to organizing & developing a very detailed outline.
I'd personally do more than the book assigns each day, but I tend to write constantly when possible. The book does a great job of giving you the skills to write a book the right way.
Whether you like the title or not, buy the book & follow the plan. Your book will be better off for it.