Friday, April 22, 2011

Write by the Seat of Your Pants: Outline or No?

Guest Post by Author Alain Gomez

Payroll (Jimmy Cochran Series)

Outlining is actually a newly acquired skill for me. Although I was taught the art in school by my excellent teachers, I never really had a need for it. I’ve always been comfortable writing school-related topics and my brain tends to be of a logical bent. So the five paragraph essay and I understood each other quite well.

But things have changed now I am an electronically published author with barely a copy a day flying off the digital shelves. I’ve still stuck to my policy of “just write anything that comes to mind and go back to correct later.” However, I find that I more and more need to go back and jot down a short outline just to help keep the flow of the story on track; especially now that I have been trying to make series.

While the short outlines help me to stay on track, I still don’t like to get too bogged down with them. My personal feeling is that the author should really just let the story take its natural course. I don’t think I’ve ever ended a story the way I originally “planned” it. I’ll be in the middle and suddenly realize that the characters are taking it in a different direction. Which is really the best part about writing!

Thank you Alain!

1 comment:

  1. I totally agree! The story just takes on a life of its own. I don't know how it happens, it just happens. That's how I feel about my stories. I feel like the characters are real people, and they mapped out their own destiny, their own lives--and I had nothing to do with it. And you have to let them go where they want to.


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