Monday, April 26, 2010

When your WIP totally owns you!

Yes, it's Monday, ugh. But don't worry, I'm not going to make you think too hard. :) Here's the thing...


When people ask the question, are you a pantser or a plotter? I usually answer that I'm a plotter. It's mostly true. I do plan stories ahead of time. I like to work up a synopsis first to get my characters figured out, the plot worked up, the conflict down pat. It keeps me on track and focused. Still, there are times I just sort of sit down and start writing. So, really, I'm somewhere between a pantser and plotter. I don't fit snugly into either category.


My latest WIP is a good example of what happens when I choose to be a pantser. The story started pretty much by itself. The characters were just...there. The opening scene was crystal clear. Each chapter has been this way. On Friday when I finished for the day I sat and stared at the screen, not really reading the words, but pondering what I'd written. And I realized something interesting. The story has taken a road I never expected. It's odd when that happens, isn't it? I almost always know where I'm headed and what's going to happen. Sure, things can go off track, but never do I go into a story blind. And the truth is I've had more fun writing this story than any of my stories to date! I think it's because each day I open that document I'm going to be surprised by what comes out of me and by where the characters take me.


I should finish this particular WIP over the next day or so. And then I'll be turning my attention to editing it and getting it ready for my beta readers. I'm mega curious if it'll be obvious to readers that I didn't plot it out ahead of time, or if it'll just be something I'm aware of.

What about you all? Do you find that going into a story blind is more exciting? Do you enjoy the mystery of not knowing ahead of time what's going to happen? Do you find it becomes a problem because the plot doesn't work? I need opinions here! LOL
And a few Monday Hunks...
not gonna lie, I'd rather be there





or there...
or there...

or, oh my, there...



8 comments:

Regina Carlysle said...

I have tried to 'plot' ahead of time with outlines and such but I must be a true pantser at heart. I bore easily and if I know every little detail going in, I sort of lose interest and find the book doesn't get written as quickly as I'd like. I like the surprise of it all, I guess. I DO take some notes before heading into a chapter so I have a rough idea but yeah, I like surprises. Makes life interesting.

And OMG...the second guy is HOT.

Laurann Dohner said...

I've only planned one book out chapter by chapter before starting it. LOL. Everything else I write... I get an idea of 'wouldn't it be cool if...', usually from a picture, fantasy art paintings, or I might have a wild dream (lol)...open a blank page and just start typing. I rarely know where it's going. I love writing that way. My characters 'speak' to me and stuff just comes out of my head! I'm glad that you're having a great time with this WIP and THANK YOU for the nice Monday morning man views. LOL.

Jake - but not the one said...

Everything I've finished I knew the ending and the beginning and nothing else. It always seemed like the story wrote itself, I just put it down as it was revealed to me.

Anonymous said...

Even when I try to avoid it, social concerns still manage to creep into my stories! With Teacher's Pet, it was sexual harassment. Class Reunion, juvenile delinquency. Off The Clock, elder abuse. I didn't see it coming, but all of a sudden...there it was. And it enriched the story:)

Kenzie Michaels

Kari Thomas said...

OMG, great way to start a Monday with those guys!

Im one of those definite pantser writers. I love letting the characters take over the story and make it the way it is. All my books are character based, so I make sure to know them before writing and then I let them have fun. Definitely keeps the writing part more exciting! Great Blog!

hugs, Kari Thomas www.authorkari.com

Anne Rainey said...

Regina--You know, I can see the losing interest thing, I really can. The thing with me is that I need to plot out the longer stories. Otherwise I get things mixed up or the plot goes stale. The short stories and novellas though, they're a bit more fun because I can just go with it! Love that!

Anne Rainey said...

Laura--Do you just wing it with all your stories? Or just the shorter ones?

Jake--I usually know the ending. With this one, i think I'm going to be surprised. :)

Anne Rainey said...

Kenzie--I totally agree with you! Those things that slip in when you aren't expecting them always turn out to be the best parts of the story!

Kari--I'm glad the guys made your Monday less blah! hehe!