Writing outside of the outline


I hate creating and writing from outlines.

There, I’ve written it down. I’ve posted this for the whole world to see. Maybe now people will stop telling me to create an outline for projects.

Even in school, I hated it when the teacher required an outline for a writing assigment. The outline was so final, to my way of thinking, and left no room to stretch. Chances were, I would change my mind in the middle of the assignment, and then have to go back and change the outline.

That would make me think twice about my idea, though, because isn’t the outline supposed to have everything already in it? See, I’m the kind of person who thinks of the best ideas when I’m in the middle of a project, not at the beginning. It seemed like tedious, needless work to me.

Some people need an outline. I get that. Some people even like them! (Unfathomable to me.) It’s not a bad idea to have an idea from the start where your story is supposed to go.

To me, though, writing down more than a couple sentences about the gist of the story is a waste of time that you could have spent starting your project. That’s usually what my journal that I keep on the side of my bed is for: I wake up from a dream, or have a thought before I go to sleep at night, and I write those down in my journal. I might flesh them out a little later when I go back to them, especially when I don’t have time for writing right at that moment, but for the most part, I do not worry about creating something like an outline.

I’m all for being organized, and please don’t think that I am prejudiced against people that create them for their projects. They’re just not for me.

What do you think about outlines? Helpful or not helpful?

Similar posts:

“Guidelines not outlines” from Moody Blog.

I'm a lover of writing and books. I graduated from South Dakota State with a master's degree in communications in 2011, the same year I was first published. I'm a wife and mom, and I work in marketing in Sioux Falls.

Tagged with: , ,
Posted in Writing tips
One comment on “Writing outside of the outline
  1. Arlee Bird says:

    I don’t usually outline. I tend to keep the structure in my head and change things if I need to along the way. I guess maybe in a sense I have a mental outline prepared, but I just don’t feel the need to write it down. Too much structure can hinder creative flow of ideas. At least that’s the way I see it.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,555 other followers

Post Categories
Add My Books to your Goodreads
Add Into FireInto Fire
Add Over Water Over Water (The Destined Trilogy Book 2)
Books I’ve recently read
%d bloggers like this: