I’ve written quite a few novels and have yet to write (or should I say plot?) two of them the same way. Admittedly part of the reason is my refusal to write anything resembling an exact formula or cookie-cutter idea which in my mind translates to boring.
But for the last few novels, I did write a brief synopsis and/or back blurb before I started chapter one. That I always partnered up with rough character lists (I don’t do charts). This time I didn’t bother with the outline or synopsis. Why?
In looking back over my previous works, I realized I hadn’t come close to that original premise in any of them. The stories evolved and the characters’ goals changed more often than not, so the synopsis was a waste of my time.
Let me clarify here. Before I started my current work, I figured out the initial goal, motivation and conflict of my major characters and kept that sentence GMC in front of me. But that’s a far as I went with anything resembling plot.
I opened a file, focused on my character and started writing. Now I’m seventy-five pages into the book and I’ve stepped back so I could take a good hard look at the story idea and determine if it’s worth developing.
It is, thankfully. So it’s full steam ahead with writing the rest of the book–after I draft that synopsis. At least now it should be more in keeping with the story promise. 🙂