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Reflections of a working writer and reader



Creating a Text – Kate Harrison

What phases are involved in the creation of a text?

Lightbulb/Eureka moment: it might be a title, or a theme, or a character that ‘pops’ up from nowhere or at least, the sub-conscious. Often it’s a combination of different ideas or preoccupations that have been bubbling away in my brain.

Greenhousing: this is where I try to move from the vague idea into something that works as a narrative, even vaguely. I have dozens of ideas a week and this is my attempt to see which have ‘legs’ and which are good ideas, but perhaps not for me. Often I might write the blurb of the imagined book, or a chapter or few pages. My books tend to be in the first person so this often doubles up as character development

Building Blocks/Plotting: if the story does survive to this stage, I might brainstorm/mind map the themes and some initial ideas for key scenes or characters, as well as the central journey or quest my main character might be engaged in. If I am about to write the book, I’ll do this in more detail, but ideally not long before I sit down to write the project, otherwise I will be bored by the time I get round to working on it… I have a short attention span

Writing: at this stage, the themes and concepts and plot are all liable to change but probably not dramatically. I generally write pretty quickly after the planning, perhaps completing a first draft in 3-6 months. I may also do some research but I tend to focus on story rather than detail

Re-drafting: this is where I will try to reconnect with those initial themes and inspirations.

Kate Harrison blogs at:; her website is at:

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