Monday, January 25, 2010

It's not you, outline, it's me...

I realized why it is that I don’t like writing with outlines. When I outline, I write down the high points that I want to happen, along with perhaps a quick explanation as to what leads up to this point. An excerpt from my second draft planning for Scorpion and Sandman :

Next day, Red brings Leon into the ring
            Her POV: she had thought she understood what he wanted, but now she isn’t sure again and just watches
            His POV: is using Leon to vent as much as any teaching he is attempting (Red and Leon’s comradary)
The problem is that I have difficulty writing between the high points. When I write seat-of-my-pants (as I do in first drafts always), the high points come out of whatever the characters are doing at the moment. Their interactions lead me onto other interactions, which pave the way for events. However, when I try to make that work out from high point to high point as in one of my outlines, it ends up feeling forced.
It’s a major epiphany for me, this realization. It explains my loathing of outlines, which had previously been something of a mystery for me.

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