The Strange Origami of Story Construction by Janine Donoho

What my Mistborn Chonicles look like when printedWhen it comes to storytelling, I view myself as a fusion pantser/plotter. There’s an inherent thrill with going where story takes me and once the first fold connects points 1 and 2, I’m hooked. Then inexplicable clusters, timelines, and abstracts recombine into more intricate patterns.

Still once I’ve developed basic folds and angles of characters, setting, scenes, and

Basic origami of what's to come

Basic origami of what’s to come

plot, I know it’s time to begin shaping the work toward a final vision. Central shapes pleat in macro and then micro gradients with affinity for movement toward or away from certain objectives. The permeability of each segment changes the structure. Visualize folds bisecting lines and angles at various degrees in progressively complex ways through cube doubling and angle trisection.

Complex origami foldsOne fold at a time, the next two Elementals have been forming into specific and recognizable shapes for years now. A few weeks ago, I pulled all accumulated files and references for the Earth Elemental before plunking them into a bag—my first clumsy origami of what’s to come.

Each story progresses through this cycle of fold, open, deconstruct, and reconstruct until it’s gone as far as I know how to take it. In that final stage it looks either like reams of stacked paper or a much less intriguing, yet substantial, electron file.

If I’m very lucky, it begins to look like this.Cover Collection 2

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Soundings, Water Elemental

LaunchFebruary 27, 2015
The big day is here.

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