Thread: Outlines?
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:21 AM   #21
gmw
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrNefario View Post
You could regard the first draft as an extremely detailed outline. I know some people write a zeroth draft, and then try to figure out what the story is.
Like VydorScope I work iteratively, I have no idea how many times the early parts of the first book were "edited"; the entire book evolved as I wrote. If what I have written previously stops involving me in the story (which is what I rely on it to do to get me back into the flow of writing) then I know something is wrong and it gets reworked.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrNefario View Post
I enjoy the discovery and making stuff up on the fly, and feel that I might not enjoy the writing if I outlined too heavily in advance, but I also think I end up with badly-structured stories quite often.
That is certainly one of the big risks, and there are others. Like-wise a detailed outline faces the risks of forcing characters into out-of-character choices and/or being overly obvious and predictable. Whatever method you choose (or have chosen for you), you must recognise the problems and try to deal with them as best you can. I added "have chosen for you" because the subsequent books in this series I am working on come predefined, to a certain extent, by the background I created in order to complete the first book, so I am no longer working completely without an outline, even if it remains a very vague one. I can imagine the reverse happening, starting with an outline but discovering, while writing, that your characters want to be involved in something quite different.

As has been said here, and on previous threads, you need to use what works for you ... and keep in mind that that may change when you start something new.
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