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NaNoWriMo: Plantsing

NaNoWriMo is almost here! Are you planning or pantsing? Can’t decide? Maybe you should consider plantsing, because that’s totally a thing.

Last year we discussed the difference between plotting and pantsing, so if you’re not sure what I’m talking about, that’s a good place to start. Now that we know what plotting and pantsing are, let’s dive into the hybrid: plantsing. Plantsing is a combination of plotting and pantsing, in which a writer can plot some of their novel, and pants the rest. If you’re undecided about whether to plot or pants this year, plantsing might be the perfect compromise.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both plotting and pantsing.

The best part about plantsing is that when you combine the two, you can mitigate the weaknesses of each. Let’s take a look.

A major disadvantage of plotting would be that there is very little spontaneity left for the actual writing. Everything’s decided ahead of time, so the organic creative juices are stifled a little bit. A major disadvantage of pantsing would be that editing a pantsed novel is much more difficult than editing a plotted novel. If you combine plotting and pantsing, however, these main weaknesses can be totally avoided.

Imagine a novel in which you have some things figured out ahead of time, so you can write whatever you fancy that day, that is still creatively up in the air somewhat, so you can let your whims take you wherever they may. That’s the best of both worlds, yeah? Plantsing is the way I’m going to go.

Keep in mind: The Plot Doctoring thread is a great place to go if you’re running out of steam or have questions for fellow writers about plot.

Are you participating in NaNoWriMo this year? Will you be plotting, pantsing, or plantsing? Please comment below!

Bree Crowder

Author: Bree Crowder

Bree Crowder is a writer and editor with interest in fiction (MG, YA, and fantasy), and lifestyle. Writing, reading, photography, and travel are a few of her favourite things.

She went to university to study English, and then went to college at the post-grad level to study creative writing. Her work has been reviewed by HarperCollins editors. Now, she writes for publications like HelloGiggles, Quirk Books, and Bustle. She is also an Editorial Literary Assistant with P.S. Literary Agency.

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