By June Shaw
Novelists may be the only people who know what I’m talking about, but they do know. And most of them can respond yes or no or both.
It took awhile in my writing career before I understood what this meant. Once I did, I realized I was a pantser.
Many others, it seemed, were the opposite: They were outliners.
I had no idea how I would outline a novel before I even started writing it, but then I discovered a huge number of highly successful authors did that. Soon I determined that I had been doing both. I did outline some major sections of the novels I began to write. I filled in the scenes by the seat of my pants, meaning I decided what came next as I went.
Outlining, I found, really did help structure my novels. It directed a path for my stories without taking away any of the creativity, all the while helping me write faster.
What about you?
Do you discover your story as you write, or do you have the whole story planned out before you type in your title? What do you find helps best? Why do you choose one or the other?
I’d love to get feedback from other others—and maybe those who don’t write books but read them have some idea of they believe would work best.
As always, thanks for sharing your ideas!