The hardest part about writing a book is organizing the work into something definitive, says Louise Candlish. The structure of the book is based on so many aspects of writing like tense, time, point of view. A story narrated in the first person would be different from a story narrated by a husband and wife. Often a book does not work because the wrong POV that has been used. A bit of experimentation later, the writer can find the right voice. It doesn’t necessarily depend on inspiration; it’s trial and error.
“We’ve all seen images of authors’ writing rooms with a whole wall of post-it notes and visual references, exactly like in a police incident room. My method is more sedate. I have a file of cuttings on my desk and on my laptop I have a ‘live’ list of scenes. Fonts might be color-coded according to narrator or tense. The list changes constantly. I also have numerous timelines, one for each main character.”
All you writers, read Why Structure Matters When You Are Writing a Novel.