Being far from home on your birthday isn’t easy – especially being away from your husband and kids, who you were already missing like crazy.

Just as well I have such great writerly friends in Brisbane.

And some of them travelled a long way to help me celebrate. Thank you Tina, Sheryl, Jules, Lynn and Ally for making this birthday in Brisbane so special.

It was lovely to dine out and talk about writing and lots of other fascinating things.

Plenty of writing and creating done today. I’m doing the tandem thing – writing and finalising my plotting. That’s how it works sometimes, the steps and processes are interwoven – developing character gives you ideas for plot and writing makes you see where the holes in your plot are.

After the bubble brainstorming of the plot, my next stage in the process is developing the plot arc. For this I also use my trusty butcher’s paper. Any ‘bubbles’ that are related to plot, I write on ‘post it notes’. I then arrange these in order of increasing intensity and basically, in order of  how I want the story to unfold.

Now I know where my story is going to start and how it’s going to end, and some of what’s going to happen along the way. Of course this can change in the writing process when characters like Lia decide to take me in a whole new direction.

Happy writing.



  1. Wow! Am fascinated with how you work. Would love to pop in one day (if I could!) and peek at your butcher’s paper setup. I love getting an insight into how you work. It really is fascinating…

  2. Karen, I’d be happy for you to take a look at my butcher’s paper. This is just how I work. There’s no right or wrong way to plot. It’s whatever works for you.


  3. Excellent. I’ll be in touch 🙂 Thank you! My theory is if I can see how different people work I’ll be able to glean bits and pieces that I like from everyone and make it into something that works for me. I’m a chart/graph/visual kind of person so I suspect the butcher’s paper might work for me, hence my interest!

    Glad lunch was lovely today – sad that I missed it but it really would have been a monumental undertaking and I just didn’t have the energy for it today!!

  4. Happy Birthday Dee.
    It’s great you were in Brisbane with friendly faces around you. The second best thing to being home.

    Angela x

  5. Hello Dee,
    I just found your post after drawing a plot arc on my blog. It’s so inspiring to see how you physically map your WIP onto the arc! Thanks for this great idea.

  6. Hi Sarah,

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment. I’m so glad you found it useful. Do you have a URL so I can visit your blog?


    Happy writing:)


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