A question asked by many. What is your process? Writing process that is.
Many times I have no idea how to answer this question. You would think as a type A personality (most of the time) I would be organized in my writing, starting with outlines, notes, washboards, etc. This makes me laugh. Because it couldn’t be farther from the truth.
In school I hated outlines with a passion. If ever I was going to get a failing grade in English or creative writing, it was because of my nemesis the outline. I feel like it was and still is a mutual loathing.
In my crazy mind, outlining takes away from the creative aspect of what writing is. It makes it too structured. Instead of the character taking over, you are taking over the character and dictating their actions, forcing the writing, instead of letting it happen organically.
I relate it to relationships, has a relationship EVER come to fruitation when one or both people are trying to force chemistry instead of letting it light its own flame?
In my own experience, a big resounding no.
Books, essays, poetry, writing in general is like that.
Which is maybe why I have had a lot of two AM wake ups because I had this brilliant idea I had to jot down because my character told me so.
And for me, that is where it all begins. A beautiful invigorating idea, which generally blossoms into a book. I will take notes to organize characters, to remember dates or historical accuracies, or a subplot that I think will fit somewhere down the line.
But I do NOT outline. In my dictionary it is a very naughty, dirty word.
I let the characters dictate, for them to reveal their own traits and personalities. They control the story. They tell me what to jot down. They are in the drivers seat, and I am just the vessel that lets them out.