Alright folks, I need help.
We all know there are pretty much two types of writers: Pantsers (those who fly by the seat of their pants while writing) & Planners (those who hyperventilate at the thought of having to begin a story without massive outlines and characterizations in place).
I’ve always prided myself on being a Pantser. Never minded the uncertainty of not knowing exactly how my story was going to get from one major plot point to another. Now that my schedule is more hectic, however, I need to find a way to squeeze the most productivity from every writing minute. As much as I enjoy the freedom of being a Pantser, I won’t lie and say it’s an efficient writing style.
Long story short – I’ve decided that for this next story idea I want to see if doing a little planning/outlining ahead of time keeps it more focused. The less chaos in the revision stage, the better, right?
This is where I need help! I’m not really sure how to begin.
I’m not worried about character development. It’s pre-plotting the outline that has me tangled up. To me “outlines” are those things we had to do in high school--I hated them with a passion-- so I think I’m having a bit of a mental block.
I’ve got a huge dry erase board to mark up with some sort of structure: perhaps what I’d like to have happen chapter by chapter? I just don’t know how to start.
So, I’m looking for any tips and tricks from you Planners out there. What do YOU do before you start a story? How do you make sure you keep your story on track? Are you okay if, in the midst of writing, your story starts to veer away from the outline?
Any thoughts are greatly appreciated!