Monday, October 17, 2011

Monday Miscellany-SemiPantsers

Last week during #YALitChat Wednesday the forever lasting question about the Pantser v Plotter came up. I wrote: "I'm a SemiPantser." And guess what? Several others on the chat said they were too. So that started me thinking (Oh, no. Not that!). But what makes a SemiPantser? My guess is a lot of different writing approaches that don't involve setting out a plot, character bios, etc. before starting a book.

In my mind, a Pantser jumps right in. They love the excitement of coming up with a new idea, meeting those characters, and then bringing them to life on the page. All of that sends them full steam ahead into the W.I.P. With this approach there's the danger of running out of that steam about half-way through. Maybe the story simply fades or the characters become inconsistent or flat. On the other hand, that impulse to create something new and fresh without "over thinking" it can propel a story through a first draft.

But what if you straddle the P v P writer life? What if you use some of those Plotter devices to support your Pantser instincts?

I guess I wanted to know, so I started a #semipantser group on Twitter and I created a semipantser circle on Google+ in hopes those of us who aren't in either camp 100% would share what they do. If you're one of us, hope your join and add your voice to this middle-of-the-road group.

The Creepy Cake N Bake has taken over this week.  Here's Michelle Zinc's entry and it so good. Rats! Double Rats! I wanted so much to win and with each entry my hope fades.


  1. Aw, love that cake! But my favorite, if you can call it that, is still the heart and kidney on a plate.

    I'm a pantser with some plotter traits, so I'm going to check out your groups.

  2. Yep, the heart and kidney did it for me too.

    I'm a semi-pantster. I'll on my way to check out your group.

  3. Well, how to find your groups? Where do I go? Help!

  4. Aww I love the cake! Super cute! I'm not really a pantser. I would run out of ideas halfway through the story. I always used to start a story that way but I would never be able to finish. I really admire people who can do that, though!

  5. Cute cake!
    I am a semipantser (I think). I have a general outline. I even do character sketches. But the scenes just flow out of me. I don't know what happens til I write it.

  6. Fantastic, Lee! I'm definitely a semi-pantser. I'll have to check out your groups!

  7. Hi--I found your blog through Ciara. I am a total panster--hoping the excitement propels me through the story. Right now, my propeller is broken. :( But I just can't seem to get the desire to plot ahead.
    I need to check out your google+ group.

  8. Great interview Lee!

    And I love the #SemiPantser thing--thank you so much for jumping on that and for including me. I think it's starting to take off.

    I sometimes get bogged down in "I don't know what happens" mode and wish I could be an outright plotter.

  9. Yep. I blogged about this a few months ago. I call myself a planter--half plotter, half pantser! Still get stuck sometimes, though. ^_^

  10. I, too, am a semipantser. Nothing-- not even the writing process-- is as clear-cut as we all pretend, eh?

    Anyway, great blog! I've sent an award your way. Come by and pick it up!

  11. I'm enjoying these creepy baked goods, but having trouble deciding which one I will try to make myself.


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