Sunday, January 6, 2008

My New Year's Resolution? Post-Its!

Welcome to The Daily Muse!

I'm Tamelia Tumlin and I write romances for The Wild Rose Press, Publish America and Shadowrose Publishing. I am currently working on an inspirational romance for Steeple Hill's Love Inspired ( although I haven't sold there yet- keep your fingers crossed). I enjoy reading, writing, and teaching third grade in my hometown.
I've always been a fly by the seat of your pants writer. Generally, I have a snippet of a plot and two characters vying for attention in my head when I start a new story or novel. I open a new word document and stare miserably at the curser flashing tauntingly before my eyes. I have no blue-print, no outline, and no map for my book. Just a blank curser. After staring at it long enough, I will eventually find the starting point and begin my story letting my characters take over. I'm not saying that this method is wrong. There are many wonderful writers that follow this very strategy. However, I've discovered that this method is not right for me. So this year my New Year's resolution is to story board using those lovely colorful post-its. Now, this idea is not original. Nor is it mine. But, for 2008 I will "borrow" it and see if it works for me. So with as much enthusiasm as a child in a candy store I purchased a small bulletin type board and several colored sticky notes. First, I plotted (yes this method requires forethought) my hero's personal journey using blue sticky notes. Then I used pink sticky notes to plan my heroine's personal journey. Yellow sticky notes mark the plot points. Orange ones indicate turning points and the black moment. I also use green to mark the romantic journey. After arranging the sticky notes on the bulletin board in order I can easily see areas that need "more color" and catch plot holes that need tweaking. So far this method has really been an "eye opener". And since I am currently working on an inspirational Christian romance, I will need to add another color to mark the spiritial journey. I wanted to take a picture of my storyboard to place on this blog, but my digital camera didn't want to cooperate, so I am posting a link to another storyboard so you can get a visual.

Storyboard Visual Link

Tamelia Tumlin

My Books

Prince of Thieves - available now from Amazon

Next Door Santa- available soon as an Amazon Short

Unexpected Gifts- available from Shadowrose Publishing- ( I have a short story in this anthology)

For Better or For Worse- Coming soon- a short paranormal love story from The Wild Rose Press

Visit my website to view book teasers for each one!


The Daily Muse said...

Ok! First, I want to know how you did that newspaper graphic for all your books. It's awesome!

And so is the sticky note process. While I have never used story boards for romance, I do rely on them for my children's stories.

I want read about a way to plot a romance by using a color-coding method. This writer suggested using highlighters to color code a romance novel that is similar to the one you want to write. When you're done, then you write your book, following the same plot path as your inspiration novel. I actually did this, and I came out with a much greater understanding for how to plot a novel. In fact, this is the reason I became a plotter.

I commend you, Tamelia, for trying something knew and having such defined and organized goals for the New Year! Bravo!


Linda Strawn said...

Maybe I should try that sticky note/story board thing. At least it'll help with keeping time-lines straight, not too mention a lot of other things straight. Things can get pretty chaotic writing by the SOTP - but it does make for some good comic relief when you go back and read over what you've written!

Lily said...

I have discovered this blog by reading your newsletter :)

My e-mail is: dnlily(at)

Nathalie said...

The post-its... how original, hope it will work for you :)