Beyond Forlorn Hope

I mentioned in another post I was working on a short story based on a flash fiction challenge I did. Well the project has been progressing. It looks as if it will be around 6,000 words. The plan is to do part two at another 6,000 words. I have a very rough idea about part two, but did extensive outlining for part one. I also outlined the dystopian story that was originally supposed to follow Forlorn Hope, but I discovered something: I hate writing a story I’ve outlined.
I lost interest with Escape (Not the actual title, or even the working title, but I need to refer to it somehow.) I was totally pumped about the three scenes I’ve mentioned before. I had difficulty writing the rest. Fortunately, two or three chapters managed to write themselves, but two of them were like pulling teeth. I assumed since it was my first attempt at writing in the first person perspective and since the story itself was pretty much a series or escalating dares, It had somehow become ‘not my project.’
When I started outlining Truth Be Told (also not the title) I discovered it was the outline that I didn’t like. I felt constrained. It became a writing assignment. I’ve been attending classes nonstop since Spring 2009. Four and a half years later, I have done hundreds of writing assignments. I’ve hated each and every one of them. I’ve done well, but they were all agonizing. I suspect the outline shifts my mindset from writing for fun to get a story out there to a structured writing assignment. Go figure.
Everything up to and including Forlorn Hope has been a stream of consciousness style of writing. It ended up with massive rewrites and the insertion of earlier text to foreshadow and validate later plot points. I thought outlining would require less of those rewrites. It only made me hate writing.
Part One of Truth Be Told is about sixty percent complete despite the outline. I plan on finishing Escape, but I will be completely deleting the outline. I’ve also deleted the outlines for parts one and two for Truth Be Told.
I’m now outline free and it feels so good.
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About Mark Gardner

Mark Gardner lives in northern Arizona with his wife, three children and a pair of spoiled dogs. Mark holds a degrees in Computer Systems and Applications and Applied Human Behavior. View all posts by Mark Gardner

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