On Sunday I finished book 2 of my new series (yay!) and did some editing before sending it on to my agent. Before I sent it I took a look at the outline I originally sent her. My story had changed a good amount from what I'd written in the outline. This outline was sent to several publications to see if anyone is interested in my buying my new series. So now I wonder: how important is the book outline? Personally I think the changes I made were an improvement to the story and I'm finding that I'm the kind of writer that changes as I go. I get new ideas and adjust the storyline accordingly so that everything makes sense, thus the editing before sending it to my agent. Hopefully I get the chance to change the outline before it is sent to publishers or cross my fingers and hope the outline isn't that important if the publishers decide to buy the series. As an author I am finding it difficult to stick to a formulaic way of writing when the way I write novels is fluid and flexible. My ideas come to me as I go, which is odd because in other areas of my life I'm a planner--always needing to know what I'm doing next and when. The main idea of the novel is the same, but the ending does not fall in line with the outline at all. I'm also realizing that maybe an outline isn't for me. If I'm the kind of writer who makes it up as I go along then maybe I need to write the book first before sending an outline so that the two will go together and there won't be any need for adjustments. Any other authors have a similar issue? Are you able to stick with an outline once you set it or do you stray as well? Feedback appreciated and welcome!
Author of romantic suspense with a new novel coming soon!