Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Guest Post with Emily Walker
All about Outlines
First of all Kayla, thank you for having me!
I am somewhat of an unconventional novelist. Some writers will start at the beginning and go to the end, but I sometimes stray. I may think of something that should happen in the twentieth chapter and write it down writing backwards from there. This is not always the case, but it does happen to me a lot. I blame my overactive mind and the fact that I just want to get it all out before I lose it.
I am fascinated by the concept of outlines. Should you do them? How should you do them? These questions run through my mind, so I decided to research outlines for this guest post that Kayla has so graciously allowed me to write. I hope that you will learn something from it.
I always outline my stories and lots of times it is on a piece of paper while I am riding in the car to the store or to some errand. My boyfriend doesn’t like to drive so I will be sitting there plotting out a whole story scribbling furiously and talking to myself. I guess it is a good thing that he loves me, because this seems crazy to me.
Let’s talk about what an outline does for a minute.
· It helps you picture the way you want your novel to go.
· It helps you work out plot points and character's purposes.
· It helps you "brain dump" this is a term I use often because I feel like I have to get it all out of my head and onto paper.
· It helps you get the creative juices flowing.
There are some authors who just sit down and start writing. I think having a plan helps you avoid plot holes and work out situations before you start writing out long chapters that you will have to change later.
The first thing I do is write a summary. It can even be just a couple of sentences but it helps me lay out what my purpose is and what will happen in my novel. Now that I have that out of the way I write down everything I want to happen in the novel. Important events, twists, and whatever will move the characters forward.
There is no right way to do an outline; you should just do it the way that works for you. You do not have to be really detailed as long as you start to create the bones of your masterpiece. You can go back and add what you need to later. You can break down the characters and break down each chapter if you want. It is up to you how detailed or not detailed you want your outline, but I do think that it is necessary for the success of your novel and sanity.
Thanks for reading!
I want to thank Emily Walker for stopping by the blog today. If you would like to know more about Emily and her books, here are a few links to check out: