Scott Woods Writes

Strictly process, strictly progress.

How Novel: A quick note on outlining

Thick in novel land. While floating out here, I’m fulfilling a not-unreasonable request about process. Here’s some insight into how I (try to) get the job done. All of the novels I’ve ever finished were written this way except for one very bad one, so this is  the method I use now.

I outline the story, then highlight all of the text. The outline reads like a first grade version of the story, basically “man walks into room” level stuff. So my outline looks something like this when its done (though less blurry):


Then I write text directly into the outline, exploding out the points with story and removing highlighted areas as they’re written. My goal is to basically erase all of the yellow.


…until I have a novel. That’s “it” (meaning it’s not ALL of it, but it’s basically how I get to the starting gate).

Plugging away,



One comment on “How Novel: A quick note on outlining

  1. Ben M.
    August 29, 2016

    At least your outlines still bear some vague semblance of actual paragraphs. Mine utilise an truly egregious amount of bullet points.

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This entry was posted on June 20, 2016 by in writing and tagged , , .

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