1. Published on Amazon? If you have a book, e-book, or audiobook available on Amazon.com, we'll promote it on WritingForums.org for free. Simply add your book to our Member Publications section. Add your book here or read the full announcement.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Dismiss Notice

Plot Changes During Writing Phase

Published by Annûniel in the blog A Tale Told by an Idiot. Views: 108

I've been working on this book for quite some time. As the time passes, I grow as a writer and the plot, character development, and world-building changes. I gave myself a deadline of the end of the spring semester (early May) to finish Part One. I was doing rather well too, until about a week or two ago when my writing brain just shut down.

I've started to pick myself back up, but I've already started to change the plot a few chapters back (I'm writing chronologically). This isn't a problem in itself as I plan on going through and doing two large edits that involve major rewrites. The problem comes from the fact that these plot changes affect chapters I have not written yet. So the question becomes, do I continue to write along the plotline that I planned originally? Should I go back and make edits now? Or perhaps I should write the coming chapters to reflect the plot changes, even if they make little sense if someone tried to read the book straight through (it's only a first draft, so it will be edited and corrected later).

Option 1: Continue on originally planned plot and take notes on changes for the next edit.
PROS
- Story has sense of continuity so readers/editors can read and make sense of the piece
- Satisfaction from a completed work
- Will likely still be able to meet the deadline
CONS
- May be a bit of a struggle to push through the story as I know it is going to change
- I'm changing the plot for a reason (i.e., nonsensical reasoning for a character, plot not driven well, etc., etc.) so the draft will be weaker.

Option 2: Go back and rewrite the chapters/scenes to reflect the new changes in the plot.
PROS
- Story has sense of continuity so readers/editors can read and make sense of the piece
- Will be a better, more satisfactory draft
CONS
- Will not meet deadline
- Will not get necessary satisfaction from completing the piece

Option 3: Write future chapters to reflect plot changes and rewrite previous chapters in the first edit.
PROS
- Will be a better, more satisfactory draft
- Satisfaction from a completed work
- Will likely still be able to meet the deadline
CONS
- Will not make much sense in terms of continuity
- May be confusing as to what changes need to be made and where for first rewrite
- Will not make sense to readers/editors until after the first edit


*sigh* I just don't know. I'm mostly contemplating options 1 and 3 as I really feel it's important to me to feel the satisfaction with a completed work. I've been stuck in a cyclic pattern of editing and rewriting because the plot changes enough. I think I need to break out of it, but I'm still a bit lost as to where to go....
You need to be logged in to comment