March 4th, 2021

charioteer

25 Days of Writing: Day 8

8. Is what you like to write the same as what you like to read?

Yes and no. I'd say that everything I like to write is included in the sorts of things I read. However, I read more widely than I write. When scanning the stories in a gift exchange collection, I'll take a look at fic for most fandoms where I'm familiar with the canon. I'll also take a quick look through the Original Fiction to see if anything tickles my fancy.

I read a lot more romance than I write, if only because such a high proportion of fan fiction includes at least some such scenes. I'm there for the plot, though—well, plot and characterization and worldbuilding. If I realize it's a PWP, I'll just back-button. Even with lovely plotty stories, I mostly skim fast over any smutty bits, because I find them boring.

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charioteer

25 Days of Writing: Day 9

9. Are you more of a drabble or a longfic kind of writer? Pantser or plotter? Do you wish you were the other? Both, or neither?

I've not done much real longfic writing: novels and the like. However, I've written everything from drabbles to novellas. The shorter the fic, the more I pants it: inspiration goes straight to keyboard. Longer stories need plotting. This often takes place over weeks of thinking before I ever start writing.

Sometimes it happens through research: this is especially true for stories with a strong historical component. In such cases, I often wonder if I'm ever going to start to write; but actually what it means is that there's a period in which I'm taking in so much data that my brain needs time to synthesize it into worldbuilding before the plot can come.

Sometimes it happens through daydreaming: often I'll focus on critical scenes, going over and over them and working out what happens around them. At one time, I'd write those scenes first; but nowadays I usually go Humpty Dumpty style, i.e. start at the beginning and go on to the end and then stop. And then revise!

However, there are other times when the plotting is done section by section. This is especially true for the handful of longer things I've written. In that case, it's still done by thinking things out; but I only have a vague idea of how things are heading in the long run. The details of each section are worked out, it's written, and then I move on to the details of the next section. I do always know how it will end, though!

I don't write outlines. The planning is normally all done in my head. The only time I can recall ever working anything out on paper was the subplot flow for FK4; and that was done very near the end. Most of the virtual season was held entirely in my head over the years I took to write it. However, I should point out that each episode was written separately. It was only piecing it all together that needed a bit of pen and paper to make sure each subplot got ordered correctly across the episodes.

I'm basically pretty okay with how I plan (or don't plan) my stories. I just wish the actual writing came more easily.

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