Do you have a writing formula?

writing formula

I’ve been asked by friends if I have a writing formula. I would have to answer ‘no’ but with an explanation. Some writers put together a very detailed outline, outlining everything that happens in each chapter of section of the story. I have tried that and it doesn’t work for me. I need to be free to let the story move in whatever direction it needs to get to the end.

My ‘formula’ consists of the following tasks:

  • I have a general idea of how I want the story to end. This provides me with a direction as I go along. But I don’t have the details of ending. That has to evolve as the characters and story evolves.
  • I identify the main characters and give them names. I then start to visualize them in my mind and put the descriptions on paper. Minor characters are developed at needed for the plot. I like to name my characters with names that can be easily remembered by the reader, yet are unique. The names help me visualize the characters.
  • I then identify the location(s) for the novel and like the characters, describe it in writing.
  • I spend a lot of time on developing the first line and first paragraph of the story. That is the moment that you catch your audience. They must be able to identify with the character and story from the beginning.


How about you? Do you follow a writing formula? I would love to hear your reasons of why or why not in the comment section below! You may also reach me via FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads!


James Frazee

Author, The Mosquito Bites

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