I’m not gonna lie; I’ve always considered myself a pantser at heart, yet this has never really paid off for me. The furthest I ever get in a novel is about Chapter 5, when my enthusiasm has run dry and so has my plot. I’ve tried to plan numerous times, but my impatience often gets the better of me, and so do my doubts.
Then I stumbled across Ready, Set, Novel! from the creators of NaNoWriMo (something I’ve often taken part in and never even come close to finishing). After flicking quickly through its pages in Waterstones, I loved the clear, colourful layout and the myriad of activities inside. I got it home and I’ve been hooked ever since, planning a novel.
The book doesn’t force you into planning meticulously like those dauntingly long character sheets that ask you all manner of (I think) irrelevant questions. The book has made me think more logically about a potential novel, making planning less of a chore, and as a result I’ve found myself becoming immersed in my ideas instead of doubting them. I imagine it’s also a great thing to come back to if you’ve hit a snag in your writing as it allows for numerous possibilities to be explored and room for change.
I’ve been working my way through it slowly and I haven’t completed every single task, but I relish the idea that I can return to some later on when I’m struggling or simply bored. I definitely think this book is a gem for those who often lose steam when writing, like me. Who knows, maybe I’m currently planning a future bestseller, but either way I’m honestly enjoying the process of planning. Now back to the book I go…