Today I finished with my synopsis writing, character developing and scene charting. I'm pretty happy with the wad of paper work that I have accrued. What I found most helpful from doing the preparatory work using the methods I already mentioned was
1. Writing the story synopsis/out line from the other character's points of views. I usually put a lot of work into the non pov major characters and the notable minors and know a lot about them before I start writing, but I've never thought about what the book would be like written from their point of view before. For some of the secondary characters I found it a challenge to write the story from their pov and still make it dynamic and interesting. I learned a lot about my characters doing it, and about the blind spots in my writing.
2. Focusing on finishing each paragraph, bar the last, of the plot outline on a disaster (from the snowflake method). While I think you have to be wary of making your writing too formulaic and boiling it down to a science rather than an art, I enjoyed examining each scene to see exactly how it drove the story forward and how to make it page turning even when it wasn't action orientated.
I have also written out various words on a big sheet of paper to remind of things that I like in books and that I don't want to lose sight of while writing Gift. Things like MAGIC. I hope it will help keep me focused.
I hope to start chapter one tomorrow, even if it is only the first couple of paragraphs. It will be hard to get any serious writing done because we're celebrating Easter and I'm in charge of the vegetarian dish (I got off very easy). Also, I suppose I should take one day off. As we know, all work and no play makes Inky a dull girl.