Saturday, 21 August 2021

 Tell Me A Story

To outline or not, that is the question... 
There are authors, who refuse to outline their work before starting – and are often outspoken about their methods. They claim that if they make a plan, and already know what’s happening, the writing won’t be natural. Instead, they start the story with an incident, and let the whole thing develop.
The method undoubtedly works for some - for experienced writers who’ve trod the long and dusty path and understand the problems. 
The problem is, can YOU recognize a quality conflict that will continue unfurling for the next 80,000 words, or will yours be electrifying to begin with, only to end in a blind alley. It’s too easy to start with a bang and a flourish of bright ideas, only to wither at chapter four.
For this reason I advise new writers to create an outline before starting to write. How long or how detailed is your choice - but a plan of any kind, will ensure that you don’t sit at a blank computer screen wondering what to compose next.
The outline is not set in concrete. Once you actually start you may find the story doesn’t develop the way you expected, you may have other ideas that change the story completely. Don’t think you can’t use these ideas because they weren’t planned. Decide which is best, the original plot or the new one, adapt your plan, and incorporate it.
Don’t abandon the outline idea - adapt.

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