Re: Re: I don’t start at the beginning

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Mikala Engel

Lord Terpsichorean – 2008-11-08 10:29 PM If you are eating a hot dog, it makes no difference where you start. But if you are trying to develop a cohesive story, then it makes sense to start with a good outline. From there you can work on it in modules, if you want. LT

It may make sense, but it isn’t the way the majority of pro writers work. And even many who do use outlines just have a page or so of scant detail, and then abandon it as the novel gets under way.
Outlining means plotting in advance, and a bunch or novelists hate this.  Two of my favorite writers, Ray Bradbury and Stephen King, have what I think are great sentiments on the subject.
Ray Bradbury is tactful and eloquent:  Remember: Plot is no more than footprints left in the snow after your characters have run by on their way to incredible destinations. Plot is observed after the fact rather than before. Itcannot precede action. It is the chart that remains when an action is through. That is all Plot ever should be. It is human desire letrun, running, and reaching a goal. It cannot be mechanical. It can only be dynamic.

So, stand aside, forget targets, let the characters, your fingers,body, blood, and heart do.  –Ray Bradbury

Stephen King is blunt:  Plot is, I think, the good writer’s last resort and the dullard’s first choice. –Stephen King.