Loving the process
My journey, as a writer, has gone from blindly writing onward, in the fragile hope that I would reach ‘The End’, to one who can now write those words with conviction. I became a student of writing, not through any bricks and mortar establishment, but by purchasing books on the subject from high street stores and Amazon, and more recently via a wealth of blogs on the subject, on the internet. I’ve learned about the mechanics of story writing and the importance of structure. In fact, I’m still learning and, in so doing, am loving the process. This, I believe, is the secret of success.
Feel the narrative unfolding
The question though is: ‘what process?’ There’s the Plotter and the Panser: each an entirely different type of writer in the way they approach matters. The Plotter plots assiduously, often down to the tiniest detail, then writes the story. The Panser gets an idea then flies with it straight off, seeing what happens. In this respect I’m most certainly a Panser, as I need to feel the narrative unfold and my characters come to life, before I can possibly get a grip on where things are going.
Steering the rudder
Once this happens, not too long into the story, I apply the brakes and stop to consider my raw material and what I’m going to do with it. That’s when I switch allegiance and become a Plotter. I’m changing from using a more intuitive, creative approach, often considered a right-brained activity, to one that is more left-brained, analytical and numbers based, involving major and minor plot points, percentages, and structural labelling. I love the variety this brings, which enables me to write intuitively while also keeping control of the proceedings. This is how, I believe, the successful so-called Panser writes, steering the rudder to make adjustments as the story develops.