Author, Jennifer St. George
Bio: Jennifer St George is the author of contemporary romance novels often set in exotic destinations. She grew up in the suburbs of Brisbane surrounded by bush. When she was 11, her family moved to South America, an adventure that gave Jennifer a lifetime love of travel and exotic international locations.
Married with two children, Jennifer has a graduate business degree and completed an MBA where she was presented with the Rupert Murdoch Fellowship.
Jennifer spent the first 20 years of her career in corporate marketing and management consulting roles, but began writing romance when she moved with her family to Byron Bay in Northern NSW, seven years ago.
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Morphing from a pantser to a plotter by Jennifer St George
When I first began writing novels, I started at the beginning and just went for it. I didn’t really know where the story was going. A germ of an idea would form and I simply wrote the book from beginning to end. Isn’t that what everyone did?
I discovered I was a pantser, as opposed to a plotter. Authors seemed to be a mix of pantsers, plotters, sceners or something in-between or even something else all together.
The trouble with being a pantser was that I threw out about 20,000 words during the editing process. As a former management consultant, I deemed very quickly that this was not efficient. I needed a better process.
Hmmm, that plotting sounded good.
I’m such a planner and diving into the story and hoping for the best never really felt right. Also, throwing out so many words certainly felt wrong, wrong, wrong.
So, I began researching how to plot a novel. I read lots of books and I attended lots of seminars and workshops. My ‘ah ha’ moment came when I read First Draft in 30 Days by Karen S Wiesner. This book whipped my plotting brain into shape. I now plot every aspect of my story before I start writing using the 30-day model outlined in Wiesner’s book. I find some of the exercises a little painful to complete, but as I’m writing the exercises invariably add value somewhere in the novel.
Probably the most useful aspect of Wiesner’s book was applying her story threads technique. That is, identifying story threads and mentally following them throughout the plot outline. This technique definitely helped reduce my editing time and made me much more productive.
So is there anything about this process that isn’t great? Well now I know what happens in the end before I write the story. I miss being in suspense…to see how it all turns out. But I believe the quality, depth and efficiency of my writing has been greatly improved.
So if you’re a pantser and it’s not working, this might be an approach that would help you too. Happy writing!
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“Tempted by the Billionaire Tycoon”
The latest sexy international romance from the bestselling author of The Billionaire’s Pursuit of Love.
Three strikes and you’re out…
A series of strange accidents are occurring at Sirona, a luxury spa resort in the picturesque English countryside. Billionaire owner Nic Capitini wants the person responsible sacked. But the law requires he give three official warnings. Nic checks in undercover to gather the evidence he needs, and when he arrives to find his general manager enjoying the spa’s facilities, he doesn’t think it will prove very challenging.
Despite first impressions, it isn’t long before Nic realises that not only is Poppy Bradford beautiful, she’s a brilliant manager who runs the resort superbly. And the chemistry between them is undeniable. When Poppy herself is threatened, it seems clear the incidents are part of a systematic campaign of sabotage. Even though he believes she’s innocent, Nic knows Poppy is hiding something. But will learning her secret mean losing her forever?
Tempted by the Billionaire Tycoon is part of the Billionaire series by Jennifer St George, but can certainly be enjoyed as a stand-alone book.
**Click HERE to buy “Tempted by the Billionaire Tycoon”
Madeline Ash says
I had a similar experience Jen! Started out as a pantser and wrote nothing of quality. Plotting is the best change I ever made! Congratulations on your new release 🙂
Thanks Madeline. I love that I’m now a plotter.
I love reading about author’s writing processes. Thanks for sharing yours Jen. It must have been a great feeling when you finally discovered the system that worked for you.
I do too, Peta. So fascinating how each author creates the magic.