Plotters vs Pantsters

There are two basic camps when it comes to the fundamentals of writing style. There are plotters, those who like to have the whole story outlined before they begin to write, and pantsters, those who like to write by the seat of their pants. Then, of course, there's the rest of us who are somewhere in between. There's been a long-standing debate between the pantsters and the plotters regarding the best writing method. In reality, they're both valid methods, and successful writers use both methods to produce successful books. Pantsters like Stephen King prefer to learn the story as it unfolds. They find inspiration in discovery. Myself, I'm a plotter like John Irving.

I need a detailed outline of what I'm going to write before I begin. In reality, my outline doesn't need to be all that detailed. As time has passed, my pantster wife has influenced me, and I've become more and more of a pantster needing less and less of an outline to dive into a new book. I wanted to make the point that each is a valid style, each appeals to different tastes, and each requires its discipline, techniques and tools. I wouldn't consider pantsterism as being sloppy writing and plotting as being organized writing. Good writing is well organized. It's just a question of the tools and techniques used to organize and the degree to which you organize information for you write. Another thing that I've noticed is that pantsters tend to emphasize character over plot or place.

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