Am I a Plotter or a Pantser? The Verdict is in.

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Hello everyone. Before I begin; I just want to take this time out to thank everyone who follows my blog. I really appreciate it more than you’ll ever know because what I say means nothing unless there’s someone out there listening…

Now as you all know, recently I started this new challenge to find out if I am a Pantser or a Plotter after criticizing the great author Stephen King for badmouthing authors who prefer to use an outline when they create a story. Something that I have been doing since I wrote my first novel. Well, this book is nowhere near to being complete and I know why it’s because (drumroll please) I am a Plotter!

After trying to write this novel without an outline for the past few weeks, I have to say it’s been hard. The pace has been slower and the time it takes to come up with each scene is ridiculously long. I have wasted so much time trying the Pantser route that I am ready to go back to being a Plotter and have begun using the outline in order to complete this book once and for all.

Do I regret doing this experiment? No. It was interesting in trying something new. Exciting even. And it gave me a chance to find out some things about myself and my writing style. This experiment just proves one thing, that writing without an outline is not for everyone. I tried it and it worked for about a week but then it started getting harder and harder until I realized that my book was going nowhere. I’m just not cut out to be a Pantser. But I am happy to say that this new method that I hinted about, did work for me. And I told you guys that if it did, I would tell you what that method was. Well, here it is…

Before I started the Pantser Challenge, I read an article about the 5 Key Method.

Here is the link for all of you who might be interested:

It consists of:

  • Key #1: The Setup
  • Key #2: The Inciting Incident
  • Key #3: The First Slap
  • Key #4: The Second Slap
  • Key #5: The Climax

In all honesty, this is a great method and although trying to do it without an outline didn’t work for me, the entire method is brilliant, and I feel that it has changed my life as far as writing goes. It broke down the way you plot a novel in a way that I never thought about and I highly recommend it to all you writers out there. From here on out, I plan to be mindful of these key methods every time I write a novel and yes, I plan to use an outline.

fountain pen writing on paper message

After losing so much time to write this novel it has made me want to rethink creating a book series. Let’s face it, a series takes a long time to write. It can take years, but I don’t know. I will make up my mind once this book is near to completion and you will be the first to know.

I have to be honest about something. This is the hardest book I’ve ever written because I have gone through some difficult times this year and it made me suffer a burnout. I didn’t want to write anymore for a long time because I needed time to heal. I didn’t give myself time to heal and I probably should have but felt like if I didn’t write, I’d go crazy. Sometimes being creative when you don’t think you can, brings forth your best work. We shall see. This could go either way. It’ll either be the best novel I’ve ever written or the worst and I’m willing to give it all I’ve got. But I will never give up.

Have a great week everyone.

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