Friday, August 22, 2014

Pantsing Through Life

In this week's episode, we touched on the Plotting From Characters approach that Angie Hodapp taught as a workshop for Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers early this year. As I mentioned, I took the workshop and it's definitely helped me look at how I tell stories and experiment with plotting.

But, honestly, deep down, I'm a pantser. I have a full story outlined using this method, but about 15,000 words in, I realized I had written a quarter of a YA novel in which, basically, nothing happens except a lot of talking and a kidnapping scene that probably doesn't even make sense. I tried to use a shortened version of this plotting method for a short story, but got so caught up in trying to make the outline make sense that I didn't actually write the story (and it still doesn't really work as a plot).

There's nothing wrong with that. Everyone writes or creates differently and we all have to find what works for us as individuals. Giles loves his outlines. I have mixed feelings. Part of me really likes knowing where the story's going to go, but they don't necessarily work for me, because my stories tend to evolve more organically and insanely as I'm writing them.

Where do you stand? Do you prefer planning, pantsing, or somewhere in between?

Emily tried planning this blog post before writing it, but it didn't work out and she wound up writing it off-the-cuff after all. Follow her disorganized adventures on Twitter @EmilyKSinger.

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