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So I recently started writing a book and decided that I should plan first because in the past while writing I lost the point of the story and lost interest in writing that particular project.

But after I finished my plan and started writing my first chapter of my new story I realized that I had planned to much. Writing the plan was fun but rewriting the same thing with more detail was boring and again I lost interest in writing it after a few sentences.

But I still really like the idea and don't want to throw it away. So my question is what should I do when I'm bored of my story but don't want to throw it away?

I know there are questions similar to this but I don't know how to stay motivated about the story.

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    Work on something else for a while and come back to it at a later date, maybe? – GordonM May 18 '17 at 11:07
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It seems to me like you need to find the sweet spot between planning and improvising. You said that previously you lost direction because you didn’t plan enough, and this time you lost the fun out of it because you planned too much.

The fun is found in a different place for everyone. As a planner, the best part is getting the story on paper after exhaustive planning. It definitely should not feel like “rewriting the same thing with more detail.” It’s seeing your idea come alive after all that hard work. For others, the fun part is discovering the story as they go along. I think you might fall somewhere in between.

If you really enjoy writing, and not just the idea-building stage, keep going and try to find that sweet spot that works for you. Take a break from this story, a month at the very least. Write something in the meantime but don’t plan so extensively – have a strong outline but have each scene open enough to create as you go.

And if after a month you still find the first story boring to write, why not give the idea to someone else? Use it as a short story prompt, or simply have a discussion on it. Seeing another person’s interpretation of your detailed plan could surprise you – you might find that there is more to it than just rewriting. Even with the best of plans, there is always room for change.

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Look over your plan, and throw away less important parts of it. You should keep any character questionnaires and chapter summaries, as well as any paragraphs you have written that you plan to use in your book later on. Everything else, particularly the detailed bits, can go.

Take time off to forget the plan then, after about a month, reread it with a fresh memory. Hopefully, by then, you will have forgotten the parts you threw out, and the fun will return.

  • Instead of 'throw away', you could keep in a separate file that you can delve into later if necessary. – S. Mitchell May 17 '17 at 21:17
  • Actually, that is a good idea, for reference if stuck. – James May 20 '17 at 4:29
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Many seek instruction and advice before attempting to write. My advice is to just write. In doing so you begin to learn what type of writer you are.

Some writers plan and outline, meticulously. However, the downside to this is that the writing becomes a chore. It's like sitting through a movie that you've seen before. You know what's going to happen. There are no surprises.

Some may advise that you put the work down for a while and return to is with fresh eyes. A break can work but you run the risk of totally losing the groove.

My method suits me, due to my style of writing. I'll call it 'the fattening'. I re-read what I've written, examining the characters in particular. You'll find attitudes and behaviour that may need justifying or explaining. You'll find opportunities and inspiration to launch sub-plots, which, in turn, change your thinking - ultimately impacting the story.

e.g.

I was writing a story about two teen girls (17 & 19) whose father remarries, and immediately goes to work overseas for 18 months leaving the girls with their new stepmother. Obviously the girls view this new woman as the evil stepmother and a battle royal ensues. And, yes, eventually the stepmother wins them round. - a fairly predictable, standard sub-plot.

On re-reading I discovered I'd missed an obvious twist. The sub-plot start with two GIRLS missing their father and hating their stepmother. But without any propaganda or influence the sisters become angry with their father. They have become WOMEN and have adopted a woman's POV. "You don't marry a 36-year-old woman, a woman in her prime . . . and put her out to pasture - it's disrespectful and it's wrong!"

From this revelation new scenes and conflicts arise. (Particularly for the older sibling). As her father's daughter, the thought of other men hitting on her stepmother disgusts her. But as woman, if her man f**ked off for over a year - damn right she'd cheat on him!

I didn't see any of this coming until I'd read what I'd written, and looked a little deeper.

Hope this helps.

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Put it aside for a good long time (probably a few months). Then go back to it. You may be burnt out and a break might get your creativity started again.

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I always jot down the points whenever I have a new story in mind. Just list down all the major events and make sure you leave sufficient space between any two points.

As and when you start writing, you will find it fairly easy to navigate from one point to another but the same is not true for all the points. So write down all you can and keep going back to the list that you prepared. All the ideas that you get about linking two points, keep entering them in the empty space between the points. Slowly, your story will begin to materialize.

Now when you hit a writers block or just get bored out of it. Keep this list handy but remove the entire story. Even when not working on a story, I have ideas that keep coming to my mind... again, they get converted to blog posts or short narrations or short stories or remain ideas that that listed on another list of random ideas. When you have listed your ideas well, you are bound to find something that will start filling spaces in your story lists.

But then, it might be different for you. I would recommend, do what comes naturally to you.

Hope this helps you!!

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Try to remember that its your story. What I mean is, write what you want to write, and don't write something that you aren't interested in. You don't have to keep anything you planned, you can add and remove whatever you want. Just write what interests you and try to fit that with the theme of what you're writing. I find that I always incorporate what I'm currently obsessed with into what I'm writing, it keeps me interested for sure and I keep in mind why I'm actually writing in the first place. Don't pressure yourself into being perfect either - art often doesn't go according to plan. It should be fun! Good luck!

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