I’ve been asked to write a proposal for a book idea (more news to follow!) I’m so not a plotter. I find outlines, and graphs, and all those complicated plotting devices, tedious. Boring. Like maths. I think, for me, they take the joy out of writing, and the spontaneity becomes lost. Knowing this about myself, I thought I’d write a two hundred word synopsis/idea for the new story. Because it’s school holidays and I haven’t been able to sit down and properly write, this book idea has been playing inside my mind like a movie. I’ve sent myself a number of emails (I really enjoy corresponding with myself) when a scene, or dialogue seems to work.
Last night I sat down to write the short synopsis, and surprisingly ended up with a three-page detailed outline. I almost fell off my seat. I don’t do outlines! They’re hard! Or are they? I can’t wait to sit down and begin this new story! It’s all mapped out. Sure, I know things will probably deviate off the path, but I know the twists, the turns, and most importantly how it’ll end.
I’m still calling myself a panster, but in the future, I’m certainly going to try doing this again.
Do you plot or not?
I used to be a pantser – I liked the excitement of following where my characters led! However, more than once I ended up writing myself into a corner that I couldn’t get out of! Now I plot just like you described – I write a detailed outline. I do deviate from the path at times but it is nice to have a road map to keep me from getting totally lost.
It’s strange because I usually hate it, but a totally different ending sprang to mind that is much better and ties in with the theme, but I probably wouldn’t have noticed once I was lost in the word count. Maybe those plotters are on to something…
I think I’ll do the same as you, and try an outline for each future story 🙂