Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Crafting a Series Bible

Now that I’m writing Book 2 in my cozy series– I’m realizing the need for a series bible. A set of descriptors that stay constant. A road map or directional signs. Like the color of my heroine’s eyes or that the Main Street Bed and Breakfast – stays on Main. (grin.)

I drew a little map based on memory – then added to it when I did edits for the first book.  I also listed off all my characters and which ones will be one book only’s and which ones will show up in book three which is still just an idea. 

But I have pages of notes – listing every time I name a place or a person.  And I had made a decision in book one on the name of a diner, that by the time I started working again on book 2- I’d totally forgotten.  More edits.

I tried making a One Page file for the series, but I guess I don’t keep it updated because it only has a couple of things saved. 

My friend does index cards on her characters.  I’m not perfectly happy with that system either.

A more successful author said that he just goes to the wiki his fans have made to look up what he needs on a character.  Now that’s fan love.

So back to me, sans rabid fans - right now, my system is pages of notes where I’ve listed out names, places, the turning points of the next few chapters.  And stickie’s floating around my desk at work and home – listing off things I need to remember to add or change or think about.

Organization. Not my strongest skill.  But I’m working on setting up a better desk process. 

What about you – writers?  Do you have a series bible?  What format do you use to store the details of your fictional world?  



Lorelei said...

Hey, Lynn, I sure do have a series bible as you call it. One notebook where I have character sketches (pages) where I list all my main character's details like hair/eye color, age where they live and any other details I want to put down.

I also have blanks where I can add characters as they happen. It's easy to get this page in your computer and then print these out so that you have them when you need them.
I even have a place at the bottom of the page where it says CHARACTER'S ROLL: (so I don't forget why I've put them in there)
I'm not very organized either, so I NEED this.

Good luck with your series, Lynn!

Jean Henry Mead said...

A good idea, Lynn, but I'd probably lose my notes. :) I keep my series books at hand to refer to when I'm writing another Logan & Cafferty mystery. I'm working on book five in the series so I know my continuing characters pretty well by now.

Lynn Cahoon said...

Lorelei -I've tried the notebook thing, then lost the notebook - or used it for something else. LOL I'm using a loose leaf one now, hopefully that will help.

Jean - I've been going through the pages, thinking I said something, then finding out I didn't.

Good luck on book 5!


Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

When I started my Tempe series I had a notebook where I kept everything. Now I put stuff on 3 X 5 cards.