Writers are generally divided into two categories: plotters and pantsers (there’s also a hybrid of the two called “plantsers”).

Plotters plan. They outline. They essentially plot out their entire books, chapter by chapter. They know where they’re going and how they’re getting there. They create (often elaborate) backstories for their characters and detailed character profiles that include all kinds of information that may not even be relevant to the story that’s being told, such as how many second cousins a character has, or his or her mother’s maiden name. Plotters start from a place of information.

That’s not me.

I start from a place of no or little information. I’m what you call a pantser. I write by the seat of my pants. On the fly. I just sit down and start typing. When I begin the process of writing a book, I have a general idea of where I want to go but have no idea how I’m going to get there. I figure it all out on the page. And by the end of the book, although we’ve started out as strangers, my characters and I have become intimate. I know them inside and out, including, maybe, their mother’s maiden name (or maybe not). I like it that way. Feels like a real relationship. Like we’re getting acquainted over time.

What kind of writer are you?