Monday, December 3, 2018

My Writing Process: Looking Through The Eyes of a Pantser

computer keyboard

I'm working on the second book in my newest series. As I wrote the first book, I saw the possibilities for the continuing story. An interesting character and situation grabbed my attention. Ideas began forming and taking shape. As I started, everything seemed fuzzy and I wasn't sure how they'd work out.

I'm still not sure!

You see, I'm what is called, "a pantser." I don't have elaborate outlines, character sheets, or plot points. Instead the story plays out as I write and ask myself:

1.  What if my character's greatest desire is out of his/her reach?
2.  How does he/she overcome the obstacles thrown at them?
3.  And, of course, "God, where do I go from here?"

While I may not have the whole story embedded in my brain, I do have more than an inkling of what I want to communicate. The blurb for the first book is:

"A runaway preacher and a runaway boy discover there's no place like home."

As a writer, there are several things I keep in mind:

1.  No backstory for the first 30 pages or so.
2.  Raise story questions in the reader's mind.
3.  What is the character's goal and what is trying to stop him/her from achieving it?
4.  When is the "big reveal - the story climax?"
5.  What is the takeaway for the reader?

Whether you plot every line or fly by the seat of your pants, writing a novel is:

1.  Exciting
2.  Exhilerating
3.  Exhausting.

Writers:  Whether fiction or non-fiction, what does your writing process look like?

Readers:  What do you consider is the most important element in a story?

Photo Credit:  Shamseer Sureash Kermar

1 comment:

Karen Lange said...

At the moment I write primarily non fiction, and my process is varied. Sometimes I approach it with an outline, whether rough or formal, and other times I just begin to write. Much depends on the topic and if research is involved, etc. Thanks for the peek at your writing process, Susan!