I definitely favour using an outline. Starting with a ‘nugget’ of an idea, expanding that by setting milestones along the way for your story, getting your ‘climax’ and ending/resolution clear early on, working on your opening scene and major turning points – and of course knowing your characters well – all helps for slicker writing.. The ‘outline’ doesn’t have to be a chronology at the start, sure you must get down to writing the novel ‘scene by scene’ eventually but having the big picture clear from the outset helps. I think this approach does leave you room to deviate, to explore fresh turns as you travel the journey with your characters. On a more techie point, the document map feature in Word is a useful tool – you can collapse or expand your scenes to move from overview to detail – and shift chunks of text/scenes around.
Published by Tom Bryson - Writer
Have a look on my website/blog tombrysonwriter.wordpress.com . 'Writing, life, books and stuff.' I was born and grew up in Northern Ireland, in the historic city of Derry - Londonderry aptly coined 'Stroke City'. 'So - where do you come from, Tom?' I hear you ask... I now live in the West Midlands of England in the attractive village of Kinver and write novels. Developing an e-book publishing venture is proving quite a challenge and eats into my writing time. Only myself to blame for that though... My cop series crime novels feature DCI Matt Proctor, namely 'TOO SMART TO DIE', 'IN IT FOR THE MONEY', 'NO WAY OUT'. My stand-alone thrillers are 'SARCOPHAGUS' and 'THE ZEPPELIN OF KINVER EDGE'. All available as eBooks or print from Amazon. In the past, my short stories have been published in anthologies with some radio broadcasts and plays professionally directed and performed in West Midlands theatre/arts venues. View all posts by Tom Bryson - Writer