I have noted, here on SUPERVERSIVE SF as well as on many other sites that articles looking at how we write and recommending certain types of outlines and processes to successfully create seem to be reproducing heavily. So here is another one — hopefully not a stillbirth.
I know I am very strange — but none of this has ever worked for me.
I am familiar with the general quote (though not the person responsible) promulgating the observation that most writers are hurricanes or perfectionists. Twain did warn against perfectionism.
The hurricane writer gets everything down and fixes it later while the perfectionist ponders and works on each line until perfect and never looks back. Of course most writers use at least a bit of both.
I wanted to address the planning (or lack thereof) of a short story or novel length piece.
My short stories often come to me all at once, usually as a surprise. I am then left to flesh them out. This completely avoids the outline phase. Often a character will require me to write their story and that character will often refuse to let me in on the final product until we arrive there together. Of course this can and does,at times,become problematic when my character lets me down. However, strangely enough, that seldom happens. Generally my characters, at least the ones brave enough or aggressive enough to talk to me, are also exceptionally dependable and trustworthy.
Novel length pieces have worked this way as well — but obviously at some point certain facts must be established and nailed down. This is why I prefer to work within previously established worlds or galaxies that I and my character already know well and can follow the logical rules therein. My characters often allow for this,but not always.
I don’t know that this serves any particular purpose, certainly not any important one, other than to allay fears that a creative person might have as to not doing “it” right. YOU ARE DOING IT RIGHT. assuming you are doing it your way. Do what you know and what you know works for you. Above all else, enjoy your creativity and the creative process.