Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Plotting again – Part III

By Ruth de Jauregui
Sadly, my "seat of the pants" are in a larger size
than they used to be...

While I'm an admitted pantser, I do know how to outline. (It was a necessity in college – all of my class notes were in outline form. It helps me remember.)

Some of the authors I know set up computer files or binders with complete biographies of their characters, the history and maps of their world, an outline of the story and the big finale. Whether you do it on the computer, or keep notebooks with scribbled notes, it helps organize the story.

It also helps you keep track of the details when writing a series, so your main character doesn't have hazel eyes in book one and chocolate eyes by book five. Or, in a real life example, my favorite series had three female werewolves in the pack, but one scene in one book said two females. Trust me, the fans pay attention to those details. There was quite the discussion about that small mistake (and other small inconsistencies) in the Facebook fan group.

Plotting keeps your story on track.

A little organization helps you, as a writer, to avoid those pesky inconsistencies that turn into a 100+ post thread in a fan group. It also helps keep your characters consistent. So the grumpy Fae (for example) doesn't go mushy in a scene where he/she would normally frown and pull out a sword.

I'm sure I'm going to have to set up some character profiles at some point, since I'm planning to feature Bitter in a series of stories. I do have a bit of fan OCD myself, so I need to be sure I stay consistent. Right now though, I just need to keep writing.

As I said before, there's no right or wrong way to write your stories. Pantser or Plotter -- Just keep writing!