Ryan Lanz, who writes The Writer’s Path, recently posted a great article on plotting style. He writes:
“The People Whisperer (20% Gardener/80% Architect)
This type of writer only is a Gardener when it comes to writing characters. This writer will detail out the plotline to its every detail yet leaves out the planning of the character arcs (development). Now, this doesn’t mean you don’t have any idea where the character will end up, per se, but you’ll give the character the room to grow into it. You could find the character will add a flavor you never imagined would come about. This is another option for some free play inside a preset structure.”
I love this. It so describes the type of writer I am when it comes to fiction. It feels good to be understood. Thank you, Mr. Lanz.
While I am not sure if the exact percentages apply to me, (having not gathered the necessary data), I am certain this nails my plotting style. Being a writing “architect” is what I love about writing because for me, writing is mostly about the journey, not the destination. My goal is to write, not to have written.
Every morning the first thing I do, as I sip my coffee, is to design my building—I am currently working on the third Book of Rhino. Like the first two books, this book is complex; that is, it integrates several concepts and themes, such as mathematical functions, beauty, aging, and self-actualization, as well as the primary themes of intellectual honesty, emotional maturity, and volitional integrity. I am also weaving in the parable of the sower.
Once I have the structure built and furnished, then I will turn my characters loose in it. I eagerly anticipate what they will do with the world I have created. Writing is such fun. Life is good.