Yeah, sure! I mean, obviously everybody always talks about how writing advice is useless (which I generally think is true), but I always love hearing writers talk about their ~process, and how they come to write things, and so on, so I’m happy to talk about that sort of stuff.
I think for me that writing is never just a matter of plot or story, or of character; it’s a matter of the object, if that makes any sense — I mean that sounds unbearable, probably, particularly when discussing… fanfiction, lol. So one of the first things I think about is how something is going to be structured, which to me means both the shape of the story and how it is going to be told. This is basically my main obsession as a writer, I think. I don’t actually remember at what point I decided to break it down into months, but the fact that I don’t remember that means it must have happened pretty early on. And as I said, I just sort of wrote that little bit at the beginning on the first day of talking about writing this, and it came out in the way that it did, and so I immediately started thinking about writing it in that way, and how that would make the whole thing work — I mean I was definitely thinking about the omniscient third person narrator during the planning process; there was no way that massive, complicated narrative, with all of those characters, was going to work without being able to shift between their points of view. I knew, basically, that I wanted it to evoke Victorian novels, although I didn’t realize the extent to which that was pretty much exactly what I was going to be doing until I was partway into writing it.
I think the best way of putting it would be to say that there isn’t a huge distinction for me — if there’s a distinction at all — between the story and the way it is told. Different prose styles and points of view completely change how a story is received by the reader, just as different types of cinematography or score affect the viewer of a film. So it is all part and parcel of the same thing. I think if you read my fic you’ll see that the style and structure changes pretty wildly from thing to thing (although there are a lot of things in that particular second person style, with the flashbacks, which I love doing — that’s the easiest way for me to just be in the characters, I think, when I’ve watched something I’m interested in exploring further), because the different stories require different ways of being told. I need to do that in order to keep myself interested, a lot of the time, in the writing. Otherwise I’m just repeating myself, and I find that quite dull. And I’m very proud of the fact that there’s so much variety. Obviously other writers are just going to be interested in doing different plots every time, which is fine. But for me the structure and style are very important.
So I’ve rambled a lot but the basic answer to your question is that it is always something I think about from the get-go, and then I keep thinking about it during the whole planning process, and then of course as I’m writing. It’s really one of the most fun parts about the writing for me, honestly. Gotta keep myself on my toes.
that I have A LOT of messages and fic comments that I have not replied to in like a week and a half, because Comic-Con ate my life. I AM GOING TO REPLY TO ALL OF THEM, I just seriously have not had time. I am only now emerging from my Comic-Con fugue state — Lily and I spent Monday literally in a coma on her couch — and am now on a “family vacation” that will mostly consist of me frantically catching up on work I neglected while Comic-Con-ing. Also, the wifi outside the hotel rooms is amazingly terrible, and since I do NOT want to sit in a dark hotel room all day, it is taking some time to do things.
Anyway, I’m about to answer a recent anon about writing stuff, but I’m not sure when I’m going to get to the rest of them. BUT I WILL GET TO THEM, so if you sent me something and haven’t heard back, it will happen.
Also, I have a reaaaally long article going up tomorrow that I’m very excited about that I will be posting about here. Friends, somebody has paid me to write a lot of words about Chris Evans (among other things). What a world we live in. What a time to be alive. So LOOK OUT FOR THAT, TOO.