I ran into a huge stumbling block on my WIP. I've been writing this book for two years now. It's never taken me that long to write anything before. So why this time. Very simple. I'm what writers call a panster - I write by the seat of my pants. I sit down with an idea. I know pretty much how the story is going to start and how I want it to end. What happens in the middle is as much as surprise to me as it is to the reader. So why the problem? At one of my local chapter of RWA meetings, the speaker (a plotter) strongly urged us to plot out our story and write a synopsis before we started writing.
I thought, what the heck. It couldn't hurt, right? I mean seriously, what was the big deal. I'd never tried it before and figured I had nothing to lose.
WRONG - I wrote out a plot - probably not as much as a plotter would do, but for me a lot and then I wrote the synopsis. Easy. Wow why didn't I think of this before. And then I started writing. Oh, I wrote out my characters worksheet too - that's something I always do. I want to know my hero and heroine backwards, forwards and inside out before I start writing.
So, I sat down and started writing. Not too bad at first, but then I hit a brick wall. I had no idea how to move the story along to the next conflict. My characters wouldn't talk to me and that was that. Blocked.
I stayed blocked for over a year.
Now when I get blocked on one thing, I move on to something else. I'm always writing. Often I'll start something else and things will click and I go back to the story I was working on. Sometimes I brainstorm. But I couldn't think of a thing to say about that story. So I revised some of my old works and submitted them and then moved on to the next. I opened the screen on the WIP and just sat and stared at it. Not one idea hit me.All I could see was the plot and synopsis and still couldn't figure out how to move the story along.
Finally, after about a year and a half, I was emailing my writing buddy and explaining how frustrated I was with this story. I started saying what if, what if I did this or maybe I should do that and next thing you know the plot and synopsis were out the window and the story took a whole new direction.
So for me plotting doesn't work and I'll never plot out a story again. Don't let someone talk you into it. Write the way it's comfortable for you. No way is right for everyone. I'm still working on that story and hope to have it done soon.