Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Tips & Tricks for Crafting Stories...



Writing is a wild ride, and Stephanie and Jess are sharing tips and tricks on the ups and downs of crafting a mystery. They've opened the closets in the Begonia House and followed the twisted corridors into the nooks and crannies of their story, where they uncovered useful tools to navigate a writer's pursuit in delivering a book.



After presenting at the Plumb Memorial Library, the authors discuss their experience using Google to build their book series in this short video clip. There's no better place to get a clue than the library!

Episode 1: Using Google to organize and edit a manuscript

Example of organizing in the Google Drive
From this:
To this:

Example of editing with Google Docs
From this:
To This:
Referring for Google/ G Suite Referral Program 

Try out G Suite and wrangle your words in line.
Learn more about G Suite
Stay tuned for the next episode of 
Making A Mystery
Coming Soon!
Catch our feature articles on Writing Mysteries

Critique, Editing your MS

Working with editors, Collaborating using Google Docs

Skeleton's poetic interpretation on formatting a book

Origins of a story, Creative process

Tips for growing a successful book garden

Writing Resources

Editors 

34 comments:

  1. My paperwork is organized, but I don't edit well on screen, so printing out my manuscripts at least twice is a must.

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    1. Alex- We do most of our editing on screen- but we always have to print out a copy or two and do a read-through that way. We find more errors that way! :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  2. We use Google docs for my contract writing job. Never thought of using it for my own writing. Thanks for the tip.

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    1. Natalie- It really makes things easier. So nice to be able to access our writing from anywhere where we have internet access. :) ~Jess and Stephanie

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  3. That's a great idea to use Google docs, it saves lots of time and effort, travel costs, and paper. Good to see how you two girls work together, thanks for sharing the secrets. Hugs, Valerie

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    1. Valerie- We couldn't collaborate as well without this amazing technology. Saves time and paper for sure! ~Jess and Stephanie

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  4. I really, really need to learn how to use this. Paper surrounds me and I can never find what I'm looking for. Thank you for the motivation. I must try this.

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    1. Beverly- It is fast and easy to set up an account. Google Docs look similar to Word docs- but changes are tracked and you can access your work anywhere you have internet access. Hope you give it a try. Feel free to send us any questions you have about the process and we will do our best to help you out. ~Jess and Stephanie

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  5. I love Google docs. That's the only way to go!

    It's so nice to see you two doing these little tips. How did you first get together and begin collaborating?

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    1. Sherry- Glad to hear you love Google Docs too and that you enjoy our tips. :)

      We became friends when we met in English class freshman year of high school. After many years of friendship Jess decided to turn an idea for a picture book into a middle grade book instead and asked me to write it with her. That began our journey. :) ~Stephanie

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  6. I usually just use Word with Track Changes when editing someone's work, but Google docs would be so much more useful with collaborations.

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    1. Cherie- Word with Track Changes is definitely a good tool- but you are right- with collaborators Google Docs does make it easier for everyone to be on the same page. ~Jess and Stephanie

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  7. Love Google docs, I used to use this with my kiddo in middle school making suggestions/reminders to check for punctuation etc. in paragraphs while we both were able to look at the written piece. In high school, I wasn't needed as much so the emphasis has changed to using Grammarly to independently edit and check the written piece.

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    1. Brenda- Awesome that you used it with your kiddo. Such a great way to edit/conference and offer suggestions! ~Jess and Stephanie

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  8. My ocd likes it better all nice and neat on screen.

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    1. Pat- We like it nice and neat too. ~Jess and Stephanie

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    1. Thanks, Lisa! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  10. I definitely need help in organization category!

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    1. Lee- This tool has helped us stay organized. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  11. But computer Boogie Man can steal your docs and erase them!

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    1. Luckily, if you are worried, you can download them to Word documents so you have a backup copy.
      :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  12. Google Drive is like a black whole for me. I'm forever losing things in there. lol Give me print! ;)

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    1. Anna- The search box is a huge help when you start to have lots of files. Type a word in the search field and it will find it in a title or in a document. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  13. LOL. This is so beyond what I want to think about today. I'm out for warm fuzzies about writing, but I suppose you don't get to the results without all the stuff in the middle. *sigh* ;)

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    1. Crystal- The stuff in the middle is definitely there. But- it does feel good to finish a piece and look at all the hard work in the rear-view mirror. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  14. I've only ever felt comfortable writing non-fiction.. I keep all my fiction works to myself! haha... need more confidence on that front.. - http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com

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    1. Gingi- Sharing fiction can definitely make you feel exposed! We can understand your feelings. We were scared at first too! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  15. Replies
    1. Thanks, Magic Love Crow! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  16. Hi both of you ... it's great you work so well together - and can utilise Google docs ... must make life easier - cheers Hilary

    PS - good to hear you both talk!!

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    1. Hilary- Glad you enjoyed hearing us talk. :) It always feels weird to see yourself on video. We love Google Docs and can't imagine writing together without it. :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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  17. This is such an awesome post :D Thank you so much for sharing. <3 So interesting to read :)

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    1. Carina- Glad you enjoyed it! :) ~Stephanie and Jess

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