Welcome Wednesday guests for August: Cindy Sample 8/6, Terri Herman-Ponce 8/13, Maggie Toussaint 8/20, Kaye George writing as Janet Cantrell 8/27.

Gloria Alden's latest publication is nonfiction. Boys Will Be Boys: The Joys and Terrors of Raising Boys. Edited by Cher'ley Grogg was recently released and available on Amazon. Gloria wrote three essays and two poems in her chapter included in the book.


Congratulations to four of WWK’s bloggers whose books were released in the last two months. Look for Jim Jackson’s second Seamus McCree novel, Cabin Fever; Linda Rodriguez's new Skeet Bannion mystery, Every Hidden Fear; KM Rockwood's new Jesse Damon novel, Brothers in Crime; and Gloria Alden's third Catherine Jewell Mystery, Ladies of the Garden Club. All of the novels are available at bookstores in print and ebook.

Paula Gail Benson's short story "Confidence in the Family" is featured in the Mystery Times Ten 2013 anthology, which can be bought at Amazon. http://www.amazon.com/Mystery-Times-2013-Linda-Browning/dp/0984203583/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1387240857&sr=8-2

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pantster or Plotter?



I’m a pantster. I can’t help it. I want to be a plotter, but it doesn’t work for me. I like surprises. If I already know what’s going to happen in my book, then I’m bored. I have tried being a plotter several times—at many people’s suggestions, but it doesn’t work for me. I don’t know if it has something to do with that left brain/right brain thing or what.

I have to have scenes running through my head. But then I decide it doesn’t work. So then another scene plows through my brain. Like my WIP, Ellagrace is a widow of a scandalous man who died in the arms of the town madam. He left her in disgrace, penniless, house in foreclosure and she suspects his girlfriend forged her name on many documents. 

She finds a job working at a small newspaper taking obituaries and farm news. When she learns she’s the owner of a house the madam had done business out of before high tailing it out of town, she figures she can sell the house, or rent it out. No way would she ever live there. But then someone torches the house.

One of my co-workers told me about a student who told her about her mother’s deceased husband and a bunch of Viagra bottles left behind in a barn or somewhere. I’m thinking those are good items to leave notes in.

While I don’t know anyone who has gone through this, I have known women whose husbands have left them for other women, spent all their money and left them with the bills, and gave them good reasons for wanting to murder the men. But they didn’t.

In a mystery, we have to kill someone off. And then we have to discover the way and how of the murders. It must be so much easier if you’re a plotter. I wish my brain would turn into a plotter, but it refuses to cooperate no matter how much I beg.

How do you handle this? Are you a plotter

4 comments:

Polly said...

I'm a pantster, so I'm with you, Dee. I haven't even made an effort to plot because part of the fun in writing is finding out what happens to my characters as I write their story. I have a general idea where I want to wind up, but the road traveled is more fun if you don't know the directions.

Warren Bull said...

Don't worry so much about it. Two of my favorite authors, Nancy Pickard and Carolyn Hart do not plan either. For that matter, neither do I. In my longer work I use a timeline of major events just for sequence but I never know who's going to do what until they let me in on it.

E. B. Davis said...

I start out by knowing my beginning and ending. From there I do both approaches to get from Point A to Point Z. I'll make up a loose storyboard for a chapter and then start writing. A lot of things can happen, but I aim to include the points I outlined. Anything extra is a bonus that I can build on and may change the path I take to get to Point Z.

Pauline Alldred said...

I know the main crime and who did it and then I start writing with the characters that are going to be most involved. The main character, the main crime and who did it can all change. I do a sketchy plot for parts that are confused or where I'm not sure how to get from there to here.