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Writing into the Dark: How to Write a Novel without an Outline (WMG Writer's Guides Book 9) Kindle Edition
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Plotters v. Pantsers
The writing world is divided between them.
Plotters - Plot before they write. Pantsers just write.
There are hundreds, (thousands?) of books on plotting (outlining); the different ways to outline, beat sheets, three-act, seven-act method, character sketches ad infinitum. Many writers will agree, even argue that this is the only way or the true way to write. They consider themselves Plotters.
On the other side are the Pantsers. Writers who write by the seat of their pants, or as Mr. Smith calls it 'Writing into the Dark'.
This is the first book I have found that embraces writing without an outline. Mr. Smith does not say his method is the only way. He does say it is the only way for him because it works for him. Then he explains how he does it. He gives writers a 'methodology' for how it's done.
But more importantly Mr. Smith gives succor to those writers who write into the dark but have to justify their writing method to the majority of writers who plot.
As a writer, I have been to many conferences and read many of the hundreds of books on plotting. I have heard heated debates at conferences and writer's groups about the pros and cons of plotting versus pantsing.
This book is an important addition to the many how-to writing books out there. New writers need to be exposed to the many ways to write. There are as many ways to write as their are writers. Until you write, you will not find the way that meshes with the way your brain works. But, writers need to know that writing without an outline does work. Mr. Smith has done a great service to writers with this book.
And it's nice to also know that he and I write in similar ways in that I'll go back and forth myself (cycling). Only I usually go back 500 words or so, then go forward 1K-2K words. So it's not as big of back and forth that he mentions, but then that's the way I do it, not him. And he's right, it doesn't take away my time from writing. I still produce about 1-3K on average per day, and rarely less. Glad I read this one.