Learning to be a plotter

So, I’m trying to learn how to be a plotter.

How’s that going you might ask? (yes, go ahead and ask now)……waiting……c’mon….spit it out.

Well, since you’ve asked, I’ll tell you.

Not worth a damn.

My first ms I wrote entirely by the seat of my pants. Made it up as I went, mostly under the influence of vodka lemonade at 3am, during an online class on how to write a novel in 30 days. I ended up hungover for 30 days, wearing carpal tunnel mitts but yes, in answer to your unasked question, I did finish a manuscript.

It was pretty horrid. The plot line wavered, the arc collapsed, but the sex (the written part anyways) was amazing. Hey, I can get some things right at 3am eh?

Everyone said, don’t fly by the seat of your pants – are you crazy?

Why, yes. I am. I thought we’d established that already.

However, I purchased a plan-your-entire-book-in-advance workbook and set out to fill it out.

Disaster. Not quite of biblical proportions, but pretty close.

I don’t know where my character lives, her street address….I don’t know her mom’s name….I don’t know what’s going to happen, until it pops out of my fingers.

But I tried. I’m still trying. I pulled out my little workbook every other day or so….delete everything I wrote before, and rewrite it all in the way it occurred to me the night before.

I’m pretty sure that’s cheating.

So, I’m kicking myself in the rear, and trying to do it right this time. If it works as advertised, I’m supposed to be able to fill in the worksheet, and then just write. The story will flow, the dialog will be witty, the plot will happen just as predicted.


I’m currently looking for an online writing class for pantsers who want to be/should be plotters but lie, cheat and steal to get out of it.

Sounds like a winner eh?


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