Lists and the creative process

I once read that, before sitting down to write The StandOne of my favourite ever books, Stephen King put a single sentence on his noticeboard. It was enough to put him in the space where he could write the novel.

That sentence was:

Randall Flagg is a dark man.

If that sentence doesn’t conjure an entire world in your head, it sounds as though you’ve haven’t read The Stand. The only thing to do is pootle off and read it.

Via Roger’s Plog, I’ve just come across a list by Rachel King, author of the Sound of Butterflies, in which she places all those items that she needs to ‘fall through the hole in the paper’.

I thought it might be interesting to come up with a list of the things that somewhat describe the ‘feel’ of my novel. Desert Island Objects, if you will, with the desert island being the novel itself.

Oh, and the synopsis.

UPDATE: Roger’s list is in the comments of Rachel’s article, a couple of other lists too…

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Ian Hocking

Writer and psychologist.

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