The method uses the analogy of the description of a snowflake by fractals, i.e. a simple shape is made ever more complex by applying simple rules. Such as this image from a Julia set.
Stage 2 is to expand this single sentence to a full paragraph which touches on the novels introduction, the three main disasters (as used to design the novel, although of course there may be more) which affect the direction of the story and the actions of the main characters. And finally the ending, how the final disater is overcome and the ending of the novel.
Eadwyne's Encounter With FEAR*
Eadwyne recruits a force from his lands, to join his Kings’s army in a distant war. Before leaving his <court magician / friend / steward> attempts to use an ancient spell to provide protection for the detachment and ensure their safe return. He gets the spell wrong and Eadwyne (unbeknownst to himself) is <split> and an evil twin is created, to become his nemesis.
The war goes badly for the King at first, and lasts much longer than expected. Eadwyne eventually returns home to find his land is ruled by his nemesis who is known by the nickname FEAR. The villagers find their nightmares are stolen and their worst fears are becoming a reality.
Eadwyne is imprisoned when he tries to reclaim his castle and sentenced to rot in the dungeons with his band.
There is a successful escape attempt and Eadwyne gradually learns of who FEAR is and what is needed to put matters right. In the subsequent necessary <activities> Eadwyne becomes infatuated with a woman who helped with the escape, and makes her his lifelong partner. With the downfall and complete disappearance of FEAR, life returns to normal for the honest folk of Eadwynes villages.
N.B. I have used the parentheses < > to bracket names, etc which I need to research a little more.
*A working title only
My biggest fear: PROCRASTINATION. I have already listed in my notebook two other ideas for plots and a way of finding more ideas from a dream notebook which I kept for several months a few years back. On the surface ideas which could be used in this novel ...... but still, I need to focus on one at a time.
I have been researching FREE software to help design the story, characters and landscape of the novel. I have found two or three which might help and I intend to select TWO to try out in parallel over the next few weeks. I will have more to say about these in future posts.
A last word:- the snowflake method is analogous to an outline but does include some helpful tips as you work through it. I will also be listing a few ways of creating an outline to balance the experience of creating this my first novel.
I should say that as the author of a number of technical reports/theses and many on-line articles, I would not attempt any writing project of a reasonable length without having a skeleton to build upon. I do however realise that writers like people are very different and individual. You must assess whether this process is the right way for you to progress. For example, I never seem to write poetry with any forethought as to where it is going. I start at line 1 and forge ahead - but that is another matter.