Outline or no outline?

Here is the age old question, and you will seriously find strong opinions on both sides of this spectrum.

You have to outline or your book reads like you don’t. You go off on wild tangents. Or you have to let it free flow or it reads like an instruction manual. I think I’ve about read every article that lists pros and cons to both.

I’ve tried to be an outliner. Planning my story down, and I find shortly into it I give up. I’m finished with the book before I’ve even gotten started. My brain whirls, and I hate the whole process. I’ve thrown more books away by trying to plan them out, than I can imagine.

I also have friends that plan down to the tiniest details before they’re ready to go. Which works amazing for them. They are able to kick out books at their own rate once they know everything.

After all of this I’ve come to the conclusion like everything else that comes with following your creative flow this too is one of them. It’s no different than what time of day you’re the most creative, and can work. There are no set rules for any bit of it. There have been great successes and failures on both sides of the spectrum. I say lets all work the way we do, and what works for you might not work for your friends.

I’m not a horribly organized person, but I tend to jot down a overview plot line. That’s great enough for me. My friend details out every tiny bit until they are sure they know every nuance of their story, and that works great for them.

This all feeds back to the saying, ‘There are rules to writing, only nobody knows them’. Like all creative lifestyles it’s a matter of what works for you. Invent your own personal rules, and follow them, but don’t forget. Your rules work for you, not necessarily your friends. So in light of it all just remember everyone has opinions, and to quote my father, ‘Opinions are like assholes, everyone has one, and some stink’.

Follow your own methods to writing that novel, and remember…..

L.O.L. (Live It, Own It, and Love it!)

Until next time.

Lovely Ladies

Hello, my amazing readers. Today, I wanted to simply give mad props to a group of lovely ladies that I’m so fortunate to have in my life. They are the type of friends, while yes all of them virtual friends on social media, they are still always there. I feel blessed to have them in my life. They are the type of friends that build you up.

Even though we are all on the writing path, they don’t rip you apart. Instead, they help me, and I help them. To me that makes them some of the strongest women I know.

I recently have pulled down my first book to start going through to polish it. You have no idea how much you learn in a few years until you read your first novel. Yikes, icky, and a few other choice words pop into my head as I work on my first novel. I’ve felt stuck, uninspired, and have already packed the book away ready to move on.

Problem is I promised a series out of the book, and regardless of how awful (yes, I’m my own worst critic) I think it is the book has gained quite the readership. Who am I to deny my readers the rest of the story? So while I’m awaiting publishing news on another book (seriously, the hardest wait for a writer) I figured I’d give another crack at it.

Why do I mention this? Because I cleaned up the first chapter. One of my lovely friends offered to critique it for me. I sent it off to her, and bam. She not only sends me back a compliment, but she also sends me back a real critique. One where the chapter is dissected into bits, and she has found things I have never realized with the book.

I know I got done saying I knew it was bad, but I never realized some of these little holes. Oh, no worries I’ll plug them, and get them smoothed out. It’s what I do. It helps so much to have someone willing to say hey, got confused here. You contradict yourself here.

I don’t find it discouraging, but rather invigorating. All of my work will pay off in the end, and the book will be so much better for it in the end. I need the critique partners to finish off this endeavor. It goes like this, after you’ve read through the same book so many times you can’t count the only critical thing you can bring to the table is the lighter to set the book on fire.

So, instead of doing that I’ve got lovely friends that are willing to help out when I need it, and I will return the favor always. We have a you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours mode of operation going. It isn’t something we’ve ever voiced, it’s just the way we work. All of us genuinely want to see the other succeed.

Now that is friendship. I leave you now my readers as I scurry off to dive into the WIP. I have a renewed sense of confidence, determination, and a long rocky road ahead of me, but we will get there.

Thank you to all my amazing friends, readers, and the Trysters in my life.

L.O.L (Live it – Own it – Love it) I know I’m going to.