Why it is not so hot to find out you’re a plotter 6,000 words from “The End”

Scrivener (software)

Scrivener (software) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Oh dear, TTWI has just gone and done it again. I was six thousand words give or take some dialogue away from writing those two little words  “the end”. When my inner editor thought it would be a great idea, no, the best idea ever to have a look at the structure. Maybe even do some cork-boarding on Scrivener.


This was not a good idea, in fact in the history of bright ideas I’ve had recently this is in the bottom two.


I’ve just cut my darling to shreds, so we’ve gone from 73,456 words to 32,245 words in my still unfinished novel. It gets worse. I have to do some research and some plotting as well. The story in its original form wasn’t working, happy coincidences abounded and I hate these in other work. Person A just happens to be in the right place at the right time to intersect with Person B y’know the sort of stuff. My geography was all over the place and even worse people’s names were changing? How did I manage that?


So the current state of play is that I have a still unfinished novel…..


The upside to this is that the novel is one I’m happy with and I guess being happy and content with the 32,000 words I’ve got is better than having a steaming pile of finished.


There’s some real work to do. As easy as it would be to throw the net-book in a drawer and cry myself to sleep, it’s not happening. I always knew this was gonna be hard. Probably the hardest thing I’ve ever done and that’s okay.


40,000 to go….


I’m doing it. I am not giving up!








13 thoughts on “Why it is not so hot to find out you’re a plotter 6,000 words from “The End”

    • Hi Leanne, thank the fates I am not alone on this. How did you get past it. Are you a plotter too? Did you take a good long look at the structure and rewrite based on a clear outline or did you pants it all the way to the end? I’d be interested in your thoughts?

  1. “The upside to this is that the novel is one I’m happy with ”
    I am never going to write novels or probably anything over 20 lines or so. But I know the feeling of “I’m Happy”. And that feeling leads to the next step. 🙂 Or for me….another post. lol

    • Hello Lovely Mixed Up! Thank you for the comment, the above is exactly why I am not giving up. To have any words at all that I’m happy with is a complete result as I am super critical!

  2. However you got to this latest draft you would have gotten here anyway. It’s part of the process. You’ve done nothing wrong. This crazy thing is what it looks like! Good work.

    • Thanks Mags, I feel a little overwhelmed if I’m honest. I thought I’d got so close to putting it away for a month to then start editing and then give it out to Beta Readers, then Copy editor, then structural Editor…. Now that seems a lot further away. But this has been twenty years in the making so I guess it’s okay. 🙂 Whats another six months between friends?

  3. I feel your pain. I went through an entire draft before I realized I should have done a better job plotting. So I’ve gone back and plotted each section, sometimes to the granular level, before committing to a second and third draft. Good luck!

    • Thanks Gus, I thought I was the only person stupid enough to write nearly 72,000 words and then realize I hadn’t put in enough work with the plot story!!! I’m trying to get rise and fall into the Novel and it’s hard. How do you get the pacing right?

      • Pacing’s always a bitch, isn’t it? I still haven’t quite figured it out, but if it sounds right, then I’m satisfied. I don’t know if there’s a right way; there’s a certain feel associated with pacing/pace that I’m always gunning for

  4. Wow. That had to be painful–and liberating. You are brave for taking the plunge. It’s never easy to cut that much. I cut 10,000 words out of my novel. As I deleted scenes I labored over for weeks, I struggled with the pain. But my novel is much trimmer. Good luck with yours. And thank you for the shout out!

    • No problem on the shout out…. I love linking through to great stuff. It is painful but necessary. I always said if I was going to publish I wouldn’t compromise on quality and this remains true. Here’s to the next 40,000, let them be “Good!”

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