Plotting Vs Pantsing Part 2

Plotters seem to have it made.
If they plan things right, which they probably will based on their wonderfully organized personalities, they'll have fewer revisions than a pantser. Plus, they have this great road map to follow.
Sometimes I get stuck and don't know what to write next, or I'll write myself into a hole. People who plot ahead most likely won't encounter this problem during the writing stage. Plus, plotters tend to do a synopsis first so that gets rid of one nasty chore right away.
I'm taking a synopsis class right now and as painful as it was, now that I've got one for my wip I'm actually feeling giddy.

If this is how being a plotter feels, then WOW.

Plotting, however, can have it's dark side. The characters may try to escape the beautiful plan you've made for them. Or you might get bored with your story, but now that you've sweated and plotted you may feel that you have to follow your own guidelines.

Ha, the only people who think writing a book is easy are the ones who've never done it.

By the way, apparently I'm not the only one with plotting on the mind. Check out this post. It's much more informative than mine!

So how about you? What's your style?


Anonymous said…
Hey Jessica! Thanks for mentioning me in part one of your post. :-) I LOVE the "Pantsing" term. Did you make that up? It's brilliant! I've never heard it called that before. I'd always heard "organic", or something of that ilk. But I really like pantser. It makes me smile.

You're so right about the dark side of plotting. Yes, the characters can and often do take you on a different route than you planned. As the writer, I have to fight the inclination to rein them in. I compromise instead, and let them take their little sidetrip in my mind, so I can see where it may lead before I write it out.

To me, the plot skeleton is meant to be lissome--flexible. Made of rubber bands, not bones. It's there, like you said, to keep characterization and motivation consistent and in sight; but it has to be able to bend for character growth and surprise twists that even the author, didn't anticipate.

That's the way to keep spontaneity alive. Without which, we would lose the magic of story telling.

Honestly, I think the best "system" is to try to incorporate a little bit of both. The ratios are contingent upon what works for each individual writer.

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