Interesting article on why you shouldn't be a pantser...

http://writerunboxed.com/2014/01/09/a-modest-proposal-to-pantsers-dont/

I am a pantser, but I guess I do have an end in my head and general direction... also if I plan, I get bored because to me the story is written... I am an easily bored person... rofl...

My argument, (and this is what works for ME, we are all different), is that if hero 1 is a teacher I know that going in.

What I don't know... Is he a good teacher? Is he a new teacher? How does he deal with bullying? Is he approachable? Was his mum a teacher? Or his dad? Why is he a teacher? These are all questions that I answer for myself as the story continues. When I get to the end it may have been the fact that he was a teacher that made him decide to hide in the closet, or it may be that his stubbornness meant he was a take it or leave it kind of guy.

I often get two thirds through a book and realise I need to go back to chapter two and foreshadow something that wasn't completely obvious when I started writing my character - because he has grown in directions I didn't even expect as a writer.

What I am saying is that I don't know my characters from word one. So if I don't know my characters how can I truly plan an entire story based around them?

Take book 7 in the Ellery series - The Agent And The Model.  I didn't know what Mikey was going to be like in Agent/Model. This story is set six years after Barman/SEAL and Mikey is now known as Michael. He's a model. He was the victim of a hate crime. Does he have PTSD? Has he fully come to terms with it? Do things happen to him that unpick old wounds or does he hide his pain because he is determined not to crack? Will he ever heal? Does he need to heal? Again, I didn't know until I started writing.

Is that the definition of a pantser? 

What do you think of the article? Are you a plotter or a pantser... And can't you be a little of each with a bias to one way or the other?


6 comments:

  1. I don't think anyone should impose order on what is clearly working. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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    1. ROFL... I like your way of thinking... :) X

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  2. Hm - nope, don't agree with Writer UnBoxed's New Year Resolution. I'm sure it works for her, but it doesn't work for me. Yers, I have the plot in my head - at least, the general direction, and one or two of the twists. I usually have the main characters in there as well. But no matter how much I may plan beforehand, they invariably come up with an unexpected twist or direction. If I try to rein them back to the original course, the whole thing stalls. So I guess, like you, I'm a Pantser/Plotter Hybrid, and that works for me. It sure as heck works for you, hon. As Sisinok says above, If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

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    1. Yeah... agreed CQ... I think I am a hybrid too... nods...

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  3. I agree. I'm a pantser, and, although I'm not necessarily proud of it, I can't imagine myself doing things differently. I tried planning one story from start to finish and at soon as I ended my script I completely lost interest in it. I don't understand why some authors don't enjoy being surprised by their stories. That's where the beauty of writing lies in. what's the point of knowing the story beforehand? It ruins all the pleasure of writing IMHO.

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    1. agreed Shayla... that is exactly how I feel... :) X

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