Read 'em and weep


Written on Friday, April 25, 2008 by haleigh

I'd like everyone to take a close look at the progress bar to the right. Then click on Christie's blog and take a look at her progress bar.

That's right......I'm ahead of Christie.

I know it won't last, but right now I'm so proud I can't even stand it. Marnee - you're still in the lead, but watch out!

So I read on all these blogs and read such wonderful authors and they're all pansters. It's very rare I come across another plotter.

And pansters always describe it in such romantic, literary terms. They get to watch a story unfold, they get to be surprised, they can let their characters grow and change!

I'm jealous of all this, I must say. So for the past few weeks, I've been working hard not to plot ahead. To just write, and let my characters follow their whim and take me where they will.

I wrote nothing.

Scratch that. I wrote a very odd scene where the hero pulls a gun out of his waistband and shoves it against the heroine's head.

Uh, not quite how I'd imagined their relationship developing.

So yesterday, I gave my students their second exam, which means I sit for an hour and a half and twiddle my thumbs, while watching for anything that might appear like cheating. And during this time, I decided to give in and plot. I had a legal pad and a pen and started writing. I filled four pages, with motivations and developments of all my main characters, including the bad guy who is working behind the scenes. I found ways out of all these out of sticky situations I'd been mired in. I even drew a little chart that used solid lines to connect my plot and dotted lines to connect my themes.

And I got home and started writing and was able to crack out 4,000 words in two evenings.

So, much to my efforts to the contrary, looks like I will remain a plotter.

Anyone else a plotter wishing they were a panster? Or a panster wishing they could plot?

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  1. Kelly Krysten |

    I'm a plotser. I pants it to a cetain point and then, when I get stuck, I plot the rest. I suppose I wish I could be one or the other, but, mainly, I'm just glad I have something that works for me.
    Congratulations Haleigh! Four thousand in two days is phenomenal. And your numbers on the side bar are very impressive!

  2. haleigh |

    Thanks Kelly! And you're right, as long as you have a system that works for you, it doesn't matter what it's called. So I guess I'm a "plotter-who-wishes-to-pants" LOL. I can live with that :)

  3. Sin |

    I'm a pantser who sometimes wishes they had enough disapline to plot. But plotting is hard for me. I know the end. That's all I know. The rest is up to me to figure out how to get there. I've always written my ending first and when I haven't, I can't finish it. I have to have a clear thought on the end. I have to have it written just as I want it. And if I want to change it slightly when I get there, then so be it.

    And you're kicking my ass for now. I'll let that float. But it won't take me long to catch up.

  4. Sin |

    PS. I'm uber proud of your word count babe!

  5. Mary Danielson |

    Okay, first..that word count is fantastic! Congrats!

    And, I'm a huge plotter. I can't just write into the great white nothing. If I don't know what's about to happen next, then nothing happens. Though, you're so right, pantsing sounds infinitely more romantic. I just can't imagine Hemingway or Austen writing out character sheets and outline, but it is the only way I get anything done!

  6. Marnee Jo |

    I'm also a plantser. I know what happens, but how it happens is sometimes I ride. :)

    Yay you writing Hal! I've been so crazy busy the past couple weeks, my writing is slllloooowwwww....

    I'm rooting for you though!!

    And Mary I completely agree with you. It is romantic, but at some point I got over the romance of it and settled for pragmatic.

  7. haleigh |

    Sin - I know you'll catch up, but I'm reveling in the splendor of being ahead for a few more days! LOL. I have a habit of writing the end early on too - it helps to know where you're headed!

    Mary - another plotter!! I'm so happy to see you here! I'm exactly the same way - if I don't know what will happen next, then I stare at a blank screen. Thanks so much for the congrats on the word count :)

    Marnee - thanks for the encouragement! Life does have a habit of getting in the way of writing, doesn't it? Has Aphrodite made any more appearances? That scene still cracks me up :)

  8. Marnee Jo |

    Thanks Hal, I'm glad you liked it. :) Aphrodite is on her way back to the orphanage. She and Julian haven't made nice just yet though.

    She fits right into the goofiness that happens at the orphanage next. LOL!

  9. Donnica |

    Good for people to know.


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