Many moons ago, I read an inspirational guest post about Love Lists by contemporary young adult author Stephanie Perkins’ for author Natalie Whipple’s blog. Here’s what Stephanie had to say on the topic:
Whenever I begin a new project, I also begin a list called “What I Love About This Story.” I start by writing down those first ideas that sparked the fires of my mind, and then I add more ideas as I discover them during my push through early drafts. I use this list as a touchstone to remind myself during the hard times why my story is worthwhile. It’s easy to forget the GOOD STUFF when I’m wading through the muck, and the end is still months away, and it feels pointless and hopeless to continue. This list becomes a crucial reminder: Yes! This is a story worth telling!
Brilliant, right? I made Love Lists for my stories Cross My Heart and Good Girls, and since I’ve crossed the 12K mark on my (currently untitled) WiP, I thought it might be time to write a Love List. Here’s what I’ve come up so far…
Hot Air Balloons
Kissing (always kissing)
And, visual inspiration…
Have you ever made a Love List for one of your projects?
What’s inspiring you today?
24 thoughts on “Love List ♥ ♥ ♥”
Kissing and lost love and beautiful pics of bridges – I love it already 🙂
Aww, thanks, Jennifer! Hopefully the story itself will live up to the list. 🙂
This is a genius idea. I’m going to have to try it
You should! And let me know when you do so I can check out your list, Sarah!
Ooh, hot air balloons? That’s not one you hear every day.
Word. I’m excited about that little element. 🙂
THAT BRIDGE!!! Love the pictures! And hot air balloons? Drinking games?Must read this ASAP. Hurry up, woman!
I’m trying! This one’s coming much more quickly than GG. That first draft was painful!
I heart love lists! It is so easy to forget all the good parts during the difficult drafting days. And this is an excellent list–kissing? Good. Mexican food? Always good. Mysterious disappearances? Intriguing…:)
Thanks, Rebecca! Kissing and Mexican food are two of my favorite things. And who doesn’t love a mysterious disappearance? 😉
I always think love lists are better at hooking people in than query letters. or elevator pitches. They’re so much more fun and descriptive. This story sounds amazing, Katy!
I think you’re right! And love lists are so much more fun to write than queries! Maybe we should try to change the status quo, Erin? 😉
Love this love list! 🙂 Jenny Han’s writing advice was something along the lines of “desserts first” because she’s able to write out of sequence and write what she loves/what’s in her heart, first. I thought that was interesting… I feel like I would have to start at the beginning and work in order, even if it was blown all the hell later. 😉 I agree with Erin, too–this is a good hook!
Ooh, I love that advice! I mostly go in order and follow along with my outline, but sometimes when I get stuck I jump ahead to a part I’m super excited about writing. I did that a lot when I did NaNo, so I wasn’t wasting time struggling to come up with stuff in a tricky scene. Thanks, Kari!
I already love the sound of your WIP. Seems like the perfect contemp read. 🙂 I especially love lonely roads, kitsch motels, and diners.
Thanks, Alice! Those things seem like road trip staples. 🙂
Love it! So interested to read where the road trip takes your characters. What states do they end up going to? Is there kissing in every state? (ha ha…there should be!)
There is definitely kissing in every state. Because… why not? 😉 They’re starting in OR and hitting CA and AZ on their way to NM. Fun route!
LOVE THIS!!!! And when can I expect this in my mailbox? :-))))
Thanks so much, Elodie! I’m only about 16K in, so it’ll be awhile, but I’d love if you would give it a read sometime down the line. You’re the best!
I never have made a love list but omg what a great idea! This would have been nice BEFORE I got so blocked on my current WIP. Whine! Thanks for sharing!
Oooh, love love love. This sounds so good! ‘Drinking games, half truths’ sounds like it should be a song lyric or something 🙂
It kind of does! And thank you! I’m excited about this story. 🙂
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