Saturday, 28 March 2015

Planning for Pantsers - Visual Tools

I have always liked using Pinterest as a means to create storyboards for my book projects. Not only does it give me a great excuse to play around on Pinterest for hours, it also gives me inspiration for characters, scenes and sometimes even a story idea. But my boards are not real storyboards, they are just images of nature, people, art and some other interesting things that I came across the website of the social media giant.
As a sometimes visual artist - I love to paint and draw - the visual aspects of the images contribute quite a lot to my "seeing" my stories unfold.
visual story, storyboard, writer tool
Storyboard of a snippet from the novel
Until a few days ago, when I found actual storyboard software. Of course, the software has been around for a a long time, since cartoonists, writers of graphic novels, animators and many other visual artists have been using it for years. Only took me a few of those years to finally get it.
I registered immediately for a free option account to try it out. Hours later (not saying how many) I had my whole novel outlined as a storyboard. Since I started out playing, I stuck to doing the essence of each chapter, but there is scope to do every scene too. There are several options on how the look of the storyboard should be, but those are for paying customers only. The price isn't bad either, and they don't mind if you subscribe for a month, do your thing and then unsubscribe again, only to do it again some time later. Sounds like the ideal tool for a writer. Do the planning in the beginning of the process, and then write and edit until the project is done. When you're ready you can start again with a new subscription as you need it.
Even with only the free option, there are many little characters and scenes and add-ons to make the storyboard truly your own.
With my novel for April Camp NaNoWriMo properly planned, storyboarded and ready to write, I will test the storyboard idea to see if it helps when I write the words.

Here is the link to the website I used.