Storybuilder Inc.

Do you write novels? Do you want to write novels, but don’t know how? Are you look for a step-by-step guide to outlining, drafting, revision, and polishing your novel, from premise to the shiny, submitted manuscript that will be ready for an agent or editor’s eyes?

I am both a writer and an editor, and Storybuilder Inc. is a comprehensive list of steps that utilize various principles of storytelling craft I have learned from other writers and professionals in the industry, and from techniques I use in my own practice. I do my best to make it accessible and adaptable for other writing styles, i.e. intuitive writers vs. planners.the writing method I use. While there is no one true writing method, it is my hope that taking the time to detail this procedure will be a helpful resource for writers looking to develop their own strategies for success.

Below is a list of the steps, each containing breakdown, explanation, and numerous examples. I will continue to add to this resource during my weekly Tuesday posts.

If you like writing tips, be sure to check out the posts by my fellow authors here at Worlds of the Imagination, especially:

Olga Godim’s writing tips


“When forced to work within a strict framework, the imagination is taxed to its utmost – and will produce its richest ideas. Given total freedom the work is likely to sprawl.” – T.S. Elliot


Step One – A premise: Starting your story with an idea, based on 3 key considerations

Step Two – Crash testing your premise: Five steps to make your premise as strong as it can be

Step Three – The three-part outline: Expanding your premise into end, beginning, middle – in that order

Step Four – Character and Setting profiles: Dealing with and keeping lateral growth organized as you outline

Step Five – The nine-part outline: Expanding from 3 parts into 9 – the key plot-point model for your story framework

Step Six – The Proposal: Write a fool-proof plan before you get ready to draft

Step Seven – The Frame-by-frame outline: Create a chronological map of milestone scenes, based on your 9-part outline


Step Eight (Drafting 1) – Drafting Begins: How to draft and use your outline to keep you grounded

Step Eight (Drafting 2) – The forest for the trees: Techniques to help you persevere during the long haul of drafting

Step Eight (Drafting 3) – Layering and scoping: Some advanced techniques for developing a solid draft

Step Eight (Drafting 4) – Alpha readers: Adding some objectivity while you draft – pros and cons, and differences from “beta readers”


Step Nine – A cold read: An effective first step, appreciate your novel at reader-speed after months spent at writer speed

Step Ten – The key to mastering structural revision: How to revise your manuscript without going in endless, hopeless circles

Step Eleven (Part 1) – A revision outline: Divide your story up into its smallest units, and make a post-draft outline

Step Eleven (Part 2) – Discovering microstructure: How to assess your manuscript’s revision needs using your post-draft outline

Step Twelve – Revision 101: Basic revision tips, utilizing the “unique story universe” principle

Step Twelve – Revision 201: 5 simple tips for efficient revision

Step Twelve – Revision 301: 5 intermediate tips for efficient revision

Step Twelve – Revision 401: 5 advanced tips for efficient revision

Step Twelve – Revision 501: 5 very advanced tips for efficient revision

Interim – Building a Revision Template: Top 5 books to help start your revision template

Forthcoming (spring 2014):


Step Thirteen – A hot read: A strategy to hold you entire story in your hands

Step Fourteen, Part 1 – Polishing: How to make your story shine on every line

Step Fourteen, Part 2 – Nuclear bombs, since this is no anthill


A companion series to follow Storybuilder Inc., detailing strategies for efficient world-building. This series is intended for writers of speculative fiction. I will explore the three major aspects of world-building, being character profiling, setting sketches, and world elements.



Filed under Graeme's World, Storybuilder Inc. Outlining and Storytelling Process

6 responses to “Storybuilder Inc.

  1. Pingback: Storybuilder Inc. — Step 12: Revision 401 | Worlds of the Imagination

  2. Pingback: Storybuilder Inc. — Step 12: Revision 301 | Worlds of the Imagination

  3. Pingback: Storybuilder Inc. — Step 12: Revision 201 | Worlds of the Imagination

  4. Pingback: Storybuilder | A Fantasy Writing Journey

  5. Pingback: Storybuilder Inc. — Step 12: Revision 501 | Worlds of the Imagination

  6. Pingback: Storybuilder Inc. — Building a Revision Template | Worlds of the Imagination

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