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In all three stages of novel writing, the rundown is the middle stage. During the first stage you design the elements and work on the plot, in the second stage, when you already know the story you want to tell, is when you decide how to tell it and that, neither more nor less, is the novel’s rundown.
What is the rundown in a novel?
The rundown, NonfictionGhostwriting writer’s will tell you in more detail in other article, is a list of all the scenes in your novel, arranged in the same order in which you are going to tell them.
In other words, the rundown is the guide for you to write your novel. A guide, scene by scene, of everything you have to write.
The level of detail with which you work the scenes depends on your preferences, at the rundown level you need to know what happens in each scene: what the protagonist wants and how it ends.
Why do you need an outline to write a novel?
If you want to know how to make a rundown, take a look at this course. These are just three reasons why it is essential to scale a novel before writing it:
You need the rundown to check your story
With minimal effort, far from comparable to writing a novel, you can see if your story works.
The danger of starting to write when you have an idea, without first developing the argument and working the rundown later, is that you get stuck. Or worse, that you write a story that could be much better if you had told it in another way.
Because that is what the rundown allows you: to know the story and decide how you tell it.
Once you have practice, you can create a rundown from action pulses. One or two sentences for each dramatic pulse will be enough to create a panoramic view and work from it.
The definitive rundown already has the different action pulses and the different mixed plots divided into scenes, allowing you to see your entire novel before writing it in what I call the panoramic view.
The rundown gives you a panoramic view
The panoramic view is real if you use a card for each scene. You can use virtual cards or physical cards, Post-its, cardboard, whatever you want.
The panoramic view consists of placing all the cards in order, so that you can see the result in a global way and analyze scene by scene.
Having a panoramic view allows you among other things:
• Check the balance (between plots, narrators, and points of view)
• Reorganize quickly and easily.
• Do tests.
• Decide narrators or points of view
• Check that there are no loose ends
The outline is the writing guide of your novel
The rundown is the map that guides you. When you have it complete, divided by scenes, with mixed plots and knowing which narrator and point of view corresponds to each scene or what the character wants and how the scene ends, writing is very easy.
What’s more, when you have the rundown you are dying to start writing. You always know what is playing today and what is playing tomorrow. And the best: where does your character come from and where is he going. And what do you want to achieve with each scene. To put intention in each of the words you write.
Among other things, having an outline helps you when writing to:
• Visualize the scenes before writing them.
• Always know what you have to write.
• Plan a writing schedule.
• Be able to write in a disorganized way if it helps you tell the story.
Tell me, do you work the rundown of your novel? How do you do it?