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Pantsing : Writers' Block Party • Page 5 • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

Pantsing

What's going on in your writing world? Connect with the writing community here and talk about whatever's on your mind.
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wdarcy
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Re: Pantsing

Postby wdarcy » Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:28 pm

One of the many inaccurate, uninformed statements in this thread asserts that there are no writing books on pantsing (I hate that term). Wrong. One of the best writing books out there is Steven James's "Story Trumps Structure: How to Write Unforgettable Fiction by Breaking the Rules." Steven is a best-selling author of FBI thrillers, and he has no use for outlines, character inventories, three-act structures, etc. Rather, he is all about telling a story (he has a Master's Degree in Storytelling) and the narrative process. He calls his method "organic writing," but it's what people mean by the term "pantsing." Tension, desire, crisis, escalation, struggle, discovery are the techniques he teaches in this book, not plot templates and formulas.

I strongly recommend this book (I've read it twice), as well as his book on editing: "Troubleshooting Your Novel." Both books helped me become a better writer, and I hope to study with Steven this summer at ThrillerFest. I do not plot or outline either, so his writing method really resonates with me.

I have read all Steven's FBI thrillers, and they are real page turners. He sure does know how to tell a gripping story, and that's what he teaches in "Story Trumps Structure."

--Warren
Last edited by wdarcy on Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Wagner's 'Das Rheingold'" (Oxford 1993). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 1995.

"Elements of Sonata Theory" co-authored with James Hepokoski(Oxford 2006). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 2008.

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ostarella
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Re: Pantsing

Postby ostarella » Thu Apr 20, 2017 3:05 pm

I think I love you. :lol:

PS -- take lots and lots of notes, please!
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Noizchild
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Re: Pantsing

Postby Noizchild » Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:46 am

I do this all the time. I tried planning, but it doesn't really work out for me. I don't have the patience to make myself do it.
You ask me what I thought about
Before we were lovers.
The answer is easy.
Before I met you
I didn't have anything to think about.

-- From "The Love Poems of Marichiko"

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ostarella
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Re: Pantsing

Postby ostarella » Tue Apr 25, 2017 11:01 am

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Brien Sz
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Re: Pantsing

Postby Brien Sz » Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:04 pm

I go into a book with the basic idea. Like Harold Corban said (paraphrase), I have a beginning and I have an end, I just have to figure out how to connect the two. I work along similar lines - I also have a couple scenes in between (sometimes they get written in, other times the story has gone elsewhere and there is no need for them). It's generally in my second draft that I plan a little more - I'll have a better idea of what I liked and what I didn't. I'll identify what I think are weak spots and organize myself to tackle various sections of the book. It's what works for me. After beta readers then get done with it, I'll adjust accordingly.

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Noizchild
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Re: Pantsing

Postby Noizchild » Fri Apr 28, 2017 3:34 pm

You ask me what I thought about
Before we were lovers.
The answer is easy.
Before I met you
I didn't have anything to think about.

-- From "The Love Poems of Marichiko"

jackitaylor
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Re: Pantsing

Postby jackitaylor » Tue May 02, 2017 6:53 am

After pantsing the first few chapters of my current WIP, I see the good of preplanning and outlining. Although, for me, at the beginning, I couldn't plan. I knew the beginnning, was almost sure of the ending (haha) and knew some key events in between. Thats all I had at that point. I had to pants it for a while, just to see what my characters wanted to do, if that doesn't sound crazy to anybody.
Now, I am in a better state to do some pre-planning/outlining, and it really helps keep me on track as I write. Although my preplanning is just a few words about what i want to happen in a scene, I still have to 'write it out'. And after pantsing a few chapters, and now know better what the developing plot is, I have to go back and do a lot of re-writing. I wish I could have planned it out better at the get go. I just couldn't . So I understand both sides to this, I guess I do a bit of both, at different times. I guess whatever works for the individual is what works, and it's all good!

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ostarella
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Re: Pantsing

Postby ostarella » Tue May 02, 2017 8:22 am

[quote="jackitaylor"]I guess whatever works for the individual is what works, and it's all good![/quote]

That is the greatest lesson you will ever learn about writing. ;)
Last edited by ostarella on Thu Jun 08, 2017 1:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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wdarcy
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Re: Pantsing

Postby wdarcy » Tue May 02, 2017 1:46 pm

"Wagner's 'Das Rheingold'" (Oxford 1993). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 1995.

"Elements of Sonata Theory" co-authored with James Hepokoski(Oxford 2006). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 2008.

max2011
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Re: Pantsing

Postby max2011 » Sat May 06, 2017 4:45 pm

Great feedback here :D

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