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8

I decide what should be written next only when I am writing that. This called being a "pants writer" or a "pantser," meaning that you write by the seat of your pants. It's completely valid as a workflow, IF you are then willing to go back to the beginning when you're finished and edit with a firm, even harsh hand. Just because it spews out of you ...


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I firmly believe that you should try both approaches and experience yourself what works best for you. Would you marry someone that you have never seen? Would you sign up for a job, or employ a new worker, without some practical probation? Would you buy a car without testdriving it? Would you decide on a lifelong diet without trying at least one meal? Do you ...


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This fits firmly into the category of "do what works for you." I find that the more I plan ahead, the less likely I'm going to reach my destination. I work best when I have an open story ahead, and my world and its characters are allowed to grow in their own ways. This has the added benefit of allowing me to be surprised a bit by my own writing. However, ...


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Why does the message have to be in English? Messages that are meant to be understood across languages are usually encoded visually. Think of the pictograms used to direct people on airports, or the comic-book-like saftey instructions in the nets at the backs of airplane seats. Or think of making drinking gestures. If I wanted to communicate a message to ...


3

The original Tarzan book deals with this situation. His parents had several years' worth of picture and children's books, which they intended to use to educate him while they did whatever they were doing in Africa (which I forget) before they were marooned by pirates. [edit: Then they both died while Tarzan was still a baby.] So, yeah, they had a ...


2

There's nothing wrong with writing off the cuff: trying to keep written conversation flowing nicely by a version of stream-of-consciousness i.e. if you type reasonably fast its almost like "recording" your own imagination-dialogue. Done well it makes for excellent material - well-paced and "natural" on read-back. The rub comes when you've finished first ...


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In my experience it goes both ways. Either you start with an outline and write chapters and scenes from it, or once you've written your first draft "by the seat of your pants" you might end up creating what looks pretty much like an outline, or a scene list, just to get a grip of the often chaotic mass of text in the first draft. (This is at least how it ...


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A common practice is to envision a scene and then write the story towards that scene. Quentin tarantino Thought up a scene where 3 men with 2 pistols each were pointing their handguns at each other in a mexican standoff. He didn't know who any of them were or what quarrel they had, but that was what he started with to make his story. To answer your ...


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It's probably useful to think of a developmental editor as a project manager. While it's often associated with non-fiction, but it's not unheard of for novelists to hire a developmental editor. (I see job posts like this every so often.) Whether you should hire a developmental editor for fiction is a hard question to answer without knowing more about the ...



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