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Finefrenzy__

Beginning, Middle or End. Which Do You Write First?

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Finefrenzy__

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Beginning, Middle or End. Which Do You Write First?

 

The title says it all. When you're starting/about to start writing a new story, what do you tackle first? The Beginning? The Middle? Or the End?

 

I know that everyone has their own approach when it comes to writing, and it could very well differ from story to story. But I'm interested to hear from others about their process. Just a little side note, this isn't how you plan your story/novel. But assuming that you do like to plan, @Rumpelstiltskin has written an amazing guide that I totally recommend you check out, which can be found +HERE!

 

Speaking for myself, when thinking up the premise for Golden Girl, I knew how I wanted it to end before even putting pen-to-paper (cause I'm old school like that). It's very badly written; mainly because I wrote it all the way back in 2011 (yes, I've sat on this idea for 8 years). But that ending hasn't changed. Obviously, if I ever actually do finish Golden Girl (which I really hope I do), it will have to be reworked, but that idea is still that same.

I guess what I'm really asking is if I'm alone in using this strategy? Or are there some that tackle the middle of their story first? If so, why? Tell me all. Surely there are some others out there, not just me, that do things back-to-front and inside-out..

 

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Oregonian

I rarely start writing the beginning first.  For a short story, I start by rapidly jotting down a series of sentences outlining how the story will unfold, but as I do this, I find myself writing more and more expansively, probably simply because the writing of the outline sentences pulls me into the world of the story and the details and elaborations just blossom.  As a result, by the time I am partway into the story (the "middle"), I'm in full writing mode.  Later, when I see how the story is approaching its final form, I will go back and write a fleshed-out beginning that conforms to what the story turned out to be.

 

If it's a longer story, I do a lot of blocking out scenes in my head, with memorized sequences of events, dialogue, descriptions, etc., for scenes that will appear far into the story, but I hesitate to put them to paper until the physical writing has reached that point in the tale.  Not sure why, maybe it's a fear that if I did, I would lose my focus, but inside my head many parts of the story exist simultaneously, because when a good idea suddenly pops into your brand, you gotta grab it.  These inchoate scenes will often require a fair amount of research when I get around to writing them in final form, to get the details accurate, which is why I keep them in my head until I'm ready to give them a lot of attention and time.

 

I almost always know how my story will end before I start writing because I like to have a good, solid ending. Yeah, I guess I sometimes know the ending before anything else.  Like the punchline of a joke, a solid ending gives the story a lasting meaning that sticks with the reader.  When I haven't done that, the story just sort of peters out and is unremarkable.

 

Thanks for starting this topic.  People's minds work so differently -- it's interesting to see all the variations.

 

Vicki

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starbuck

i don't know about my oneshots, they weren't planned out so...but for TAOBN i knew how the story was going to start and i knew how it was going to end before i started writing it. so no middle part for me except for a very vague idea of it :P

but even with knowing the end i can't make myself write it. it just feels weird, maybe because i can't write out of order and i'm honestly in awe of people who do :o

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MrsDarcy

With ACC I definitely started with the beginning, but only because I had no clue what the plot would be. It sort of developed from that. All my ideas begin with dialogue and I've written some future scenes that are pretty raw - that way I jump around a lot, but I only have a vague of what is going to happen, which can easily change. The last couple of months I've been more concerned with just writing chronologically and let events unfold from that

So my strategy has kinda changed and I don't actually know how my story will end yet :hmm:

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ReillyJade

My brain doesn't let me start anywhere but the beginning. I remember once, years ago, trying to start in the middle because I had a scene very vividly in my head that I just wanted to get on paper (er... screen). That lone scene has been neglected ever since, stored on an old flash drive that's probably at the bottom of my odds-and-ends drawer. I just couldn't figure out how to build around it, and gave up on it almost as quickly as it started.

So, since then, I made a compromise. Since most of my stories grow from an idea for a moment (a scene which most often falls naturally in the middle or at the end of story), I write an outline first. If I feel like I absolutely have to write out something for that one scene, I put together an outline and make sure I have the bare bones of a beginning, middle, and end before I start writing. This seems to work for me, even for one-shots. 

I really envy those of you that can start in the middle or at the end, though. I wish I could work like that! 

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MadiMalfoy

For me, I can only write beginning-middle-end, no matter what ideas I've got in my head. Even when I was re-planning my novel (twice!) I still methodically went through it from the beginning. Sometimes I'll have ideas for scenes that would usually fall in the middle of a story, so I just end up writing that "scene" out and call it a day because I refuse to attempt to work around it then. :P 

Sometimes I'd like to be able to work from end-middle-beginning or some other order of events, but I just can't do it yet! That's also why it's taking me forever to get started on my OF....

But yeah I think it's so cool when other people can write an entire story from this one scene that happens in the middle! Y'all are just great writers, period. ^_^ 

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