This post is actually NOT about Camp Nanowrimo. (Well, not directly.) Surprise!
When I started writing, I was a die-hard pantser.
Writing was like reading a book: I never knew what the characters were going to do, or say, or be. If one of them died halfway through, great! If they felt like meandering through a forest for eight pages, great! There were no restrictions to where my imagination would take me. And when I had that bizarre inspiration in the middle of the night, it would fit perfectly into the thing I called a plot.
Sure, I had some idea where the story was going (eventually), but it was allowed to take detours or scenic routes.
I’m doing re-writes. And I’m finally wrestling this monster called Plot under control. It’s going down, kicking and screaming (and biting, too). But it’s going down.
I know where my story starts now. I know what the turning point is. I’ve created conflict in the beginning (that was previously nonexistent). I know about the conflict in the middle and the climax and the resolution.
Okay, so it still doesn’t fit into the magical Seven Points of Plotstuff (aka the Dan Wells Story Structure, as referenced today on one of my favorite blogs, Am I Doing This Right?) or the Circus Tent for Instant Plotting (as referenced here on another of my favorite blogs, Crackin’ the WIP).
Actually, now that I look at the Dan Wells Thingy, maybe the Inciting Incident would be when Star meets Irsong and Emmella… and Plot Point 1 would be when she gets the Item… and then Pinch 1 when they find out he’s evil and they flee… and then… Plot Point 2… then…
Hey! My plot actually matches that pretty well! *Applauds myself*
The point to all this? I really enjoyed being a pantser. It gave me incredible freedom. But going back and re-writing while knowing where I’m going is pretty cool too. I loved the feeling I got while writing yesterday. It was pure Oh-my-gosh-I-love-the-plot-and-this-conflict-is-beautiful-and-my-story-is-amazing-and-I-could-publish-this-someday.
Will I pants my next novel? No idea. Will I at least attempt an outline for it? Probably. Will I always be a pantser at heart? I’m 99% sure the answer is yes.