NaNoWriMo: Day Five, AKA why bother outlining

by courtvanhaaren

Okay, the odd numbered updates are NOT intentional. I don’t even know how this happened. It makes me doubt the days. Am I blogging the right days? I have no idea.


For the couple weeks before NaNo kicked off I made multiple outlines and ideas. I was excited to have everything (except a synopsis) in order and ready to go in my nifty little Avengers notebook.

Guess what notebook went missing at the beginning of the month?

Yes, so everything that I have been writing was what I could remember planning out. I couldn’t remember some character names, so I left them out intentionally (for the time being). Within the last few days I did notice some differences in my original story, but I didn’t really think there was anything major.

Well, I was completely wrong about that.

That nifty little Avengers notebook I mentioned earlier? I found it under our coffee table in the living room. I was ecstatic when I found it, believing that I would be able to place the paragraphs that have accumulated the last few days into the outline and original plot. Flipping through my notes, I realized that absolutely nothing I had planned corresponds or even compliments the story I have now. The title is even different. (If you were curious, it went from Shattered Light to Understanding Ophelia).

I do admit that I’m a little disappointed that I did all that planning for nothing, but I am ultimately still excited about my progress and the direction it’s going. As I’ve previously stated before, this is my first attempt at drafting a novel and absolutely everything is a lesson.

Today’s lesson? Don’t outline, write.

Any wrimos out there? I would LOVE to hear your progress!

If anyone is interested in a more interactive update, I am constantly tweeting about nano- @courtvanhaaren

Until next time! (Probably Day 7)

~C M VanHaaren