“I Got a Plan!”

Last Sunday I was talking with a man at my church who works at the Library of Congress’ music department, when somehow he mentioned Mozart’s opera, “The Magic Flute.” Mozart created a lightly veiled description of the free mason society through his last opera, and, as a result, received death threats and a lingering theory for us about the cause of his early death. “The Magic Flute” is a fairy tale, with notes of whimsy. “Hm,” I thought. “Sounds similar to what I’m trying to do with this series” (one book published, three more to come.) (Disclaimer: I’m not a free mason.) The whole previous week I had been self-agonizing on trying to find a decent, basic plot, and irking my mother in the meantime about it. That evening I sat down and watched “The Magic Flute” on YouTube and was able to brainstorm the series to the end. Haven’t touched the outline since.

But writing is much more work than that. This is only a rough rough outline. A preliminary outline. I still have to ask questions about holes or flaws in the plot, and after I’ve got it down best I can, there’s characters, character arcs, setting, world building, and research to be done. Then I write. Oh! But then you’ve only made it halfway through, because then you need to know how to edit and go through rounds and layers of it. Then, you might just be able to get published by one out of forty publishers . . . But I’m self publishing. And so I have to market the books myself. To clarify, I’m not complaining; I just want to point out that writing a good book takes hard work.

No one reaps a good crop unless they’ve prepared and put in the labor; the bum who walks into a concert hall and blows everyone away with his Beethoven has even put in the preceding work. It’s never mere talent. But when your work is finished, it will look as easy and effortless as ballet appears to be.


Here’s the series outlining guide I’m using:

Ultimate Guide: How To Write A Series

This is the book I self-published:

Mozart, “The Magic Flute,” and the Free Masons: