Tuesday, August 04, 2009


This is my Big Hair Day. Not that I'm having one of those Big Hair styles. The longest hair on my head is less than 4 inches long, so that'd never happen. This is the day that I'm having the cut and color in preparation for my son's wedding on Saturday.

It's the number one item on my List o' Things To Do. I made a large calendar yesterday for the week, with master lists of things to do. This is one way I organize my time and days.

You might then assume that I do something similar when it comes to my writing - that I have outlines and character sketches and other organized means of going about it.

Nope. I write my synopsis (a present-tense telling of the story) and that's about it. Sometimes I'll outline, but usually that happens when I'm stumped about how to get from the present point in the story to the next point, and then to the end.

I've written this way for twenty years because I haven't had the patience to do long outlines, and while I trust my instincts (developed, I think, by getting an English Literature degree), I'm wondering if my plots might be stronger if I outlined more.

I probably won't change my mode of operation for the next book; the synopsis is already written and I have a strong handle on where it's going and how it's going to get there. But after that, it might be time to try working on a longer outline first - although I know I won't stick to it completely. If a good idea comes up while I'm writing, that will always take precedence over anything I may have planned.

I usually attempt something new or different with every book, although not necessarily as major as the initial approach, because if you just sit back on your laurels, all you get is squished leaves.

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