Writing as Architect or Gardener

George R. R. Martin writes fantasy, horror, and science fiction. I write women’s fiction and romance.

Our genres are different, but our process to a finished book is much the same. I also start with a seed. There’s no telling where a story idea will come from, but I rarely have a plan for the story. Except I do know there will be a satisfying ending.

I greatly admire those who can plot with colorful sticky notes and checkerboard graphics designating scenes. I envy the ones who know the percentage of each portion of three act structure or hero’s journey. I can’t do that hard as I try.

I begin with my happily-ever-after seed and watch it sprout and grow into a full-fledged story like a gardener. Sometimes I have to do a lot of pruning along the way to keep the story working. That is precisely what gardeners do for their plants.

If you’re a writer, what’s your writing process like? Do you garden or follow a blueprint?

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One Comment on “Writing as Architect or Gardener

  1. I am very much a pantser, but I’m determined to do better. Plotters don’t get as stuck in the middle as we do. the story I’m working on now is a mystery and needs much more plotting. I’m actually having fun do it.

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