Story Mapping – Identify Weaknesses in your Writing
I don’t normally do ‘advice’ type blogs and, in fairness, this won’t really be one. What I am briefly going to talk through is story mapping. We covered this on my MA Creative Writing course last week but, in fairness, I have been doing it for years and it is a really useful tool for me to get a full understanding of my book.
So, what is it?? Put simply, it is exactly what it says – I draw out, usually on A3 paper, a map of my novel. I can map numerous things i.e. Locations, characters, chapters…. Whatever I want – I physically draw them all out either as a timeline or as a mind-map (timeline for me, personally, as I am a very linear thinker) then I write a brief paragraph/line about each part so I can get a good feel for story flow and try to pinpoint any errors.
For me, in the case of my current novel, I believe I have two problems.
1. PoV – I am not sure if I can sustain the three PoVs that I have – but I’m not sure if I can manage with only two to get across all I need to.
2. I believe that I have ramped my ‘tension’ up too quickly and have then tried too hard to maintain it, by hook or by crook, for the majority of the book – the result? As a read it becomes monotonous and there is never any rising danger or tension as we’ve already peaked!
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