Plotter or Pantsman

Reading the article is The Writer Magazine, some of which was reproduced in the ALLI blog on whether as a writer I am a Plotter or a Pantsman, I have to admit to being a Pantsman.

I have a vague idea of where I am going but I like the spontaneity of introducing characters without knowing how important they will be to the final book. For example, Sarah, in Search for the Light, wrote herself to begin with. I had no idea she would be so fundamental to the book. I wondered whether I should kill her off before we got to Tasmania, because I hadn’t worked out the structure of the last third of the book. She appears again two years after the convicts have landed, but until then, I did not know how I was going to manage her reappearance. Again she helped me.

In my current book I find the same thing happening. A brother who only appears in the first chapter is suddenly of huge importance to the development of the story in book two. He has to be rescued from obscurity. A female bit part player in part one, is seen only on her deathbed in part two but she pleads for some backstory and I have to oblige.

So 47,000 words in I cannot say what will happen from here on in. Ideas are swilling around, who knows how it will end.

Are you a Plotter or a Pantsman?

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About Rosemary Noble

Writer, author, amateur historian and traveller
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