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  1. Brandon P.

    Brandon P. Senior Member

    Nov 12, 2009
    Likes Received:

    Mixing planning and pantsing

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Brandon P., Dec 17, 2011.

    I've tried both the planning approach (i.e. writing outlines for my story's events and drawing web diagrams that describe my characters) and the pantsing approach (i.e. start writing immediately without having a clear idea of where the story is going) and I've found that neither of them work very well for me by themselves. Almost every plot I can brainstorm is either way too obviously derivative or has one or two fundamental flaws that ruin the whole thing. On the other hand, whenever I go by pantsing alone, I find myself stuck and wondering where to go next by the time I reach the middle act. Looking back at all the stories I've managed to finish, it seems that they all involved a combination of planning and pantsing; I would start the story knowing only what would happen in the first few scenes, but by the time those scenes get written the rest of the plot unfolds in my head and I have a tentative mental outline to work with.

    Does anyone else mix planning and pantsing?
  2. Tesoro

    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

    Jan 3, 2011
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    A place with no future
    I do a mixing of them through the entire novel. For each scene I draw a rough sketch of what i want from this scene, the essence of it but not the exact details on how that is going to happen, and that way I feel I have a guideline when i sit down and "improvise" :) it works for me, at least. I don't think people need to be obsessed with being/doing one thing OR the other, why not try and, as you say, take the best from several concepts and find a method that works for you?

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