Outlining AFTER you write a novel.

Whether or not you outline before you write a novel, you should consider doing an outline after the novel is finished and before editing.  Why? Because I said so.  Just kidding.  Har me out.

Plot lines bend and they weave all over the place and it’s hard to keep them all straight in a single glance.  You forget small details that make a world of difference in your story.  If there are any parts of the story you found “weak” or “too cluttered,” you need to be able to get a birds-eye view of them.  An outline can help you do that.

Even if you wrote an outline before you started writing, you should revisit it and make sure it has all the crazy plot bunnies that weaved their way in when you were in the zone.

* An outline will show you where your story sags, even if you don’t want to admit it.

* An outline will show you where you “info dumped” and pushed your characters too hard.

* An outline will show you your story arc and flow.

* An outline will make sure you closed up all those crazy plot holes.

* An outline will give you the piece of mind that everything is there and you wont have to do five million drafts.

For some, outlining will take a half hour.  For others it will be a will long adventure.  I promise you it’s time well spent and will save you time in the long run.  If it doesn’t I will give you your money back…


8 comments on “Outlining AFTER you write a novel.

    • It has helped me immensely. I’m in the middle of edits on Undead Dead Girl. The middle of the book has WAY too many plot lines moving through it and it is information overload. By taking a step back and making the outline, I could see which points needed to stay, which characters had to go, and get a clear vision of how I wanted to move forward. I hope it helps you too.

  1. I’ve toyed with this before, but I actually think I’m going to write a more thorough outline for my WIP this time around before I start editing again. Thanks for the reminder! 🙂

  2. I mentioned this idea sounds heretical, almost scandalous, but it does make sense. I have several outlines I write throughout the first draft. But then, when a particular chapter or multiples scenes are going to be long, I like to outline first, or will change it multiple times, even sequences. This saves time..and money.
    Thanks, I will revisit my outlines more often!

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