10/20/09

Writing Tip Tuesday: The Snowflake Method

If you're having trouble getting your basic novel idea worked out and expanded, you might consider trying The Snowflake Method.

This method of writing fiction will not work for everyone, but I've had some success with it and I've talked to other writers who have liked using it.

Basically, you start with one sentence, and then expand—making it more intricate and detailed as you go.

You can find complete instructions HERE. (I am not endorsing this guy's products. This is a free info page and pretty much all you need to give The Snowflake Method a try.)

If you've tried The Snowflake Method (or decide to try it today), I'd really love to hear about your experiences.
  • Did it work for you?

  • What didn't work?

  • How did you tweak it to make it fit YOU?

  • Is there another method you like better? Why?

6 comments:

Carolyn V. said...

I love the idea of the Snowflake Method. I tried it a year ago.(although I've strayed from it) It's still a great idea!

Chantele said...

I've tried it, but I am better at letting the story tell itself as I am typing it.:) I should try the snowflake method again though. My current WIP is kicking my butt!:)

Jordan McCollum said...

I just finished a series on plotting on my blog, and in week 2 we talked about the Snowflake Method: http://jordanmccollum.com/tag/snowflake-method/

I've tried it, but I didn't like it. Too much planning—and I'm a (converted) plotter. I much prefer the Hero's Journey and Larry Brook's Story Structure (weeks 3 & 4 of my series, which will soon be a free PDF).

Paul West said...

I've used the snowflake method to write my synopsis, but the novel was already written by the time I found about about this method.

When I was in college, I took a creative writing course (got an "A" by the way - past self on back). One thing I can remember about the course was the way the professor asked us to plot a story. He wrote a sentence on the chalk board and said, use this as your opening sentence. Then he wrote a seemingly unrelated sentence on the board and said use that as your final sentence. Now, connect the dots.

That's it. Basically, know your beginning and your ending, and make sure your story begins and ends there with all the complications and sub-plots tied up neatly before or at that point.

I've done that and think it's a good method. At least it works for me.

M. Gray said...

I read Brooks' story structure, as mentioned by Jordan, and I am totally impressed. I've read a few other plot books and this was the most succinct and helpful.

Noble M Standing said...

I use Brooks' Structure as my main plotting tool. I love how clean and solid the blueprint is. I love that as long as you have those few points you can then sit in your chair and frewrite acording to the plot you have designed. Once I have outlined the story I go though it and add the Hero's Journey to augment the character arc.

Go check out Jordan's series on plotting its awesome she did an awesome job.