Monday, April 19, 2010


I'm working on a sword/fantasy/sci-fi story at the moment. Fantasy is tailor made for questing. I was having a bit of a problem keeping all the strands together until a happy thought occurred to me. I decided to structure it like a game...a questing game.

Once I hit on that basic idea, I sat down with pen and paper and "structured" my quest. One column was all the steps required to complete the quest. A second column was a list of all the corresponding barriers to completing those steps. And the third column listed any peripheral actions (such as sex) that might possibly take place along the way.

I had no problem laying out the story. None whatsoever. However, now I'm having trouble writing the story. I've puzzled over this for a couple days. And it finally dawned on me--I know how the story ends now. I know the story and therefore, I lost interest.

It seems like it would be easier to write the story since I have a pretty good idea how I'll weave all the strands together. But I guess that isn't going to be the case. Instead, I'm now struggling with a certain irritation because I'm stuck with the story line as laid out. Obviously, I'm not much of a plotter.

Apparently, I'm somewhat a free spirit. And free spirits are most likely pantsters when it comes to writing. Part of my own enjoyment in writing is that joy of discovery as each bit of the story is revealed.

I'm going to stick it out. Maybe I'll learn something new about the story and myself. Maybe...this will be my quest. Maybe I'll take the crazy straw and go on.



  1. I recently attended a workshop given by Brenda Novak and she said that is she plots she can't write the story, because she feels like she's already written it. Made a lot of sense to me.
    I am definitely a pantser. Good luck with the story. :)

  2. I'm struggling with the same issue on my romanticon story. It came to me fully formed, but now I'm stalling in chapter 3. I've left it alone to work on other projects, with the hopes the characters will 'talk' to me again soon.

  3. Let's hear it for free spirits. The same thing happens to me when I try extensive plotting. I lose interest in the story. The magic is gone. KAPUT.

  4. I can and sometimes do make outlines or write a synopsis ahead of time. Have never once had a story come out exactly the way I planned it. There are still surprises along the way!