I tried writing without plotting {Nano 2011 AKA Unexpected Occurrences.} and I ended up with over 84000 words, with zero structure and a little plot.  While I was happy to finish the novel, I’m bummed about the lack of structure and plot. It’s proving a nightmare to revise. So, no more panstering  for me!

I need structure.

So, this week I took a break from writing, in order to iron out some rough spots in my plot outline for the current WIP. I’m happy to say I’ve fleshed out what could have been three major plot holes and added half a dozen neat little twists.

As an added bonus, I noted some ideas for a second and third novel for the series. See, outlines do have some advantages. *wink*

Now I have the basic plot and most of the subplots fully outlined. I’m ready to continue writing the first draft. I’m sure I’ll discover new little twists along the way, but I have a clear road for writing it out. Yay!

Now if I could just shut off my inner editor and finish rough drafting, before I start revising again…  Ah well, tigers can’t change their stripes.

On a happier note: I just received {in my opinion} a huge compliment from one of my crit partners tonight. She mentioned an agent she thinks might be interested in my current WIP. The fact she thinks it’s agent worthy was a serious confidence booster! Thanks again, partner. That’s just what I needed to get me geared up for the long haul to finish drafting it.

So dear readers, are you pansters or a plotters? How do you handle road bumps and plot holes like this? Those of you who outline, do you ever go back and revise your outline while writing?


About kittyb78

Catrina Barton is a licensed Kung-Fu Instructor of the Black Dragon style, and draws on that experience to make her fight scenes both realistic and action packed. She enjoys being surrounded by the stark beauty of mother nature. Whether it's a moon-lit starry sky, or a picnic by a peaceful waterfall cascading from the mountain side. Growing up no matter where she was physically, she always had at least one book in her hands and spent every free moment lost in a book. It's only natural that as she grew up, her passion for reading grew into an even stronger passion for writing, especially Young Adult Paranormal Romances. She is a proud member of many writing and marketing groups, and an active participant at Critique Circle and several other crit groups. Favorite personal quote: "An author cannot grow without both constructive criticism and encouragement."

8 responses »

  1. Yes, I need structure, but with freedom to roam. How far away from the barn I get is another story. Inspiring post, thanks.

    • kittyb78 says:

      Thanks for commenting. I am the same way. Without structure I’m lost in the woods with no skills. With structure, I veer off from time to time {usually turns out for the best} and find some unusual paths.

      I have to have structure first, or chaos reigns.

  2. Peggy Isaacs says:

    I have recently learned this painful lesson. I hate outlining but I am finding that it is a necessary evil. Good luck!

  3. Novel Girl says:

    I learnt the hard way that my novel sucked in the Plot Department too.

    I read a fantastic book that’ll help you (if you haven’t already read it). It’s called STORY ENGINEERING. I deconstructed it on my blog, basically outlining all the highlights in each section. I have a page called “Story Structure Series”, but I won’t link it here (because that’ll break rule #1 of genuine blogger commenting). :p

    From now on, I’ll always plot a novel before I begin.

    • kittyb78 says:

      Well Nano was a first for me in many ways, panstering being the biggest one, completing a novel in one month was a second first for me. Thanks, I’ll look into it. I think I have that one as an ebook, if not it’s one just like it. 🙂

  4. She Started It says:

    I did not outline for the first novel, either. But you better believe I’m doing it for the second one! Great post.

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