Hey everyone! I hope you’re all doing great and if you’re participating in NaNo next month, how is your Preptober going so far? We are so close to the start of NaNoWriMo. It’s crazy how fast time flies isn’t it? Anyway, so far my month is going really well…I’ve gotten so much accomplished. My covers were completed for the first three book. All my plotting and outlines are finished. I only have my plot wall to put together and then I’m ready to write Second to Fall!
Today I wanted to jump on here and chat about plotting! Now if you’re a writer like me, are you a plotter or a pantser? For those of you that don’t understand what those things are, a plotter is someone who plots out their whole book in advance. I’m a huge plotter, I have three types of outlines I do for each book and a plotting wall. I use timelines and everything! A pantser is someone who flies by the seat of their pants so to say. They don’t usually have any plans written down but kind of know in their heads where the story is going or what it’s about, but they really don’t have a plan for it all planned out.
Like I said above, I’m a huge plotter. That’s why Preptober is very important for me. I take this whole month and plan out every detail of my book. You might be asking why in the world do you do that? Well, I like to know what I’m writing and where it’s going to go in detail. It makes it easier for me to win NaNo as well. I used to be a pantser and I couldn’t get all the words I wanted to come out of my head and onto the screen because the way I write I need that plan. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing if you can just sit down and go for it. I honestly think that’s awesome, but it’s not something I can really do anymore. (Though sometimes I wish I could again!)
Now there are downfalls to plotting so much, you can over plot and that happened to me last year. I thought I had my story all plotted out perfectly and I was just typing my little heart out and then all of the sudden, one of my characters dropped a bomb on me and I was like Oh now where do I go from here? I had to change a lot of my story, honestly, I had to take a day off writing and re-plot things out so it all made sense. Though it did still work out and I won NaNo, but you should always be ready for that just in case that happens to you.
Above I mentioned having three different types of outlines. So I have a small outline or scene list, I have a large outline that outlines my whole book in great detail and I always have outline cards that I use to rearrange scenes if I need to. I know that sounds like a lot, but it’s something I find that really helps me. Then there’s also my plotting wall, I use this so I can see the whole plot spread out and can fix any plot holes that need to be fixed. (Also I use images to work on that as well!)
This is what a plot wall looked like once it was finished for book one, now since it’s not published yet and won’t be till Jan 2022, I didn’t get too close up so you can’t see any spoilers. But you get the gist of what I was going for. I use a lot of sticky notes so I can move the scenes around.
I also use character sketches and questionnaires so I know my characters so well. I know this might sound weird to some, but I actually role play my characters on Tumblr so I can get into their heads. It’s a great way for me to get to know them and what they would do in certain circumstances. Like I said I’m a very detailed plotter!
There you have it, a glimpse into my plotting routine and what I’m really working on during the month of October for Preptober! If you’re participating in NaNo this year, are you a plotter or a pantser?