So we’d started to cool down but then again, we haven’t. Another stinking day here – at least we’re not in Mordor like a friend is!
But down to business.
Someone asked in a Facebook Group how deep people plan.
I couldn’t answer that question. Because I’m what most people call a plantser. While I’m planning, my fingers are getting itchy and my characters are starting to get antsy – sorta telling me “get on with it! Stop this planning stuff and get that keyboard ready! I wanna talk to you!”
So my planning is basically – start, middle, finish. I know where the story starts and where it’ll end up – it’s what’s in the middle that’s interesting. Because I don’t know most of that.
Take my sequel to Dark Dimensions. A friend read what I had written and gave me feedback and I thought and thought and realised that there was an element that was missing. So I tried to put that in. But my characters kept fighting me about it. So after a week of struggling, I just pulled the scene. There was no way it was going to happen. I even tried it from 3 different characters’ points of view.
But it was an interesting process to go through because the scene was evolving as I was writing it. I really wanted it to go in one direction, but there was no way I could get it there, no matter how hard I tried. I could turn around as I have above and say it was the ‘characters’ faults, but in reality, who are these characters but facets of me and my creativity. So it was my creativity that was blocking the scene.
So that’s what I mean by a plantser. And I don’t plan anything before NaNoWriMo. Or if I dream anything.
Take Delta Recoveries (to be completed). That wasn’t a dream so I planned a lot of the different elements in it. And even though I had planned this particular work, it still led me in a direction I hadn’t expected to go which made me do a helluvalot more planning in the background for the NaNoWriMo experience this year. And that’s what happens when you take 2 completely different creatures, gene splice them, blend the DNA and splice the genes again, then do a huge amount of more genetic manipulation and end up with 2 races that are quite clearly related yet look nothing alike and nothing like the 2 creatures from the beginning. (Oh, the pain of planning that side of Delta!)