Editing vs Writing vs Planning/Plotting

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Yet again, apologies for my silence.

I have no excuse but for the fact I haven’t been writing. Instead I have been beta-reading/editing a gal’s Mass Effect fan fiction. Which lends itself to this post as it did the last.

Yes, its another pro and con list. I like them.

Writing Pros

Basically the list from last week. In this case I’m talking about writing with no plan

– The world is your oyster. You can do whatever you want. It’s your sandbox and you are king, god, CEO.

– Nothing is out of bounds, so long as it makes sense/fits in your world

Writing Cons

– Progress can stagnate when you don’t have a road map.

– If you change or add something midway through going back and adding it can be migraine inducing.

– You have to rely on your brain or ongoing notes to keep physical descriptions, personality/speech quirks, places, maps, etc straight in your work.

Planning Pro’s

– Since nothing is set in stone you can play around with thoughts/ideas/side plots you wouldn’t ordinarily do while writing.

– If you make major changes late in the game, notes are easily added to change earlier chapters.

– You can explore ideas in full before committing to them.

Planning Cons

– It’s easy to ‘burn out’ and feel like the actual writing is like pulling teeth.

– It is also easy, in the writing, to feel like the plot is ‘locked in’ and no changes can be made.

Editing Pros

– The world and characters and story are already there. No creation needed.

– Editing is so easy. You’re polishing, prettying and perfecting.

Editing Cons

– Big changes are a big responsibility. Hell, even small changes have long reaching effects. Try removing even a side character and it’s a pain.

– It’s easy to get bogged down in the details.

– It’s hard to come to terms with the fact that it’ll never be perfect. There’s always something that can be fixed. The trick is knowing when to stop fixing.


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