Why You Should Outline Your Novel [Video]

There are two types of writers, there are those who take time before they start writing to outline their work, and then there are those that just get right to it.

For the longest time, I thought I was in the latter camp. I would start writing and then, through the majesty of imagination, my story will end up exactly where I intended it to end up.

That was rarely the case, most often I meander from scene to scene without a clear focus, guiding myself to an often unsatisfying climaxing and a lacklustre conclusion.

In my more youthful years, I had all the free time in the world to write. I would pull all-nighters just for fun. Yes, fun! I would write all day long. That luxury is so far in the past that it now feels like someone else’s life. I don’t have a whole day to write anymore and the idea of staying up all night for fun is laughable.

As a content writer, it is important that my time is used wisely at the office. I have only a certain amount of time to produce a piece of content worthy of being published. It is not a creative feat, but it is an exercise in efficiency.

If you know what you are doing at the very early stages, if you know where you are going, you can start mapping out your day a bit better. An outline is an essential piece in accomplishing that. I can’t imagine writing a blog post without some sort of outline (albeit, I did not outline this one), and now, I can’t imagine doing the same for a novel with multiple parts.

I have so many abandoned, half written pieces of work from short stories to novel length manuscripts. I blame my haste to write and my neglect to outline for those unfinished works.

So here is to a new me, going forward, I am most certainly going to outline my work, especially one as epic. I give myself the permission to diverge from the outline should I see fit, but in order to keep myself on schedule and focused on the job at hand, I need to be organized.

Start with the outline or at least have a clear direction. If I did, I might have written my second or third book in the series by now. Or… I might not have started the first one at all. It’s hard to look back and say, but going forward, this is what I’ll do first. Outline.  

Check out my YouTube channel for more on my novel writing journey.

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