Growing up, I loved writing and books. Storytelling in any form was one of my great passions. So when I got to college I was super excited to take creative writing classes.
But my first creative writing class was far more disappointing than I expected.
Whether we’re writing memoir, fantasy, young adult or literary fiction, there’s one judgment we writers recoil from more than any other. One thing we can’t stand to be called. One thing that makes us cringe to even think we might be approaching it.
During a recent coaching call one of my clients asked me if it’s important to have each scene meet a specific goal that contributes to the overall story. He said he was a bit worried, because sometimes he felt he “just needed to talk on the page” and so he didn’t start every scene with a preconceived goal in mind.
He wanted to know: Do writers need to outline their goals before they even start writing?
This is a touchy topic because most writers aren’t even aware they have a problem with it. It’s something we all do, but that we examine very rarely. And when we try to change, our resistance kicks in big time and freezes us in our tracks.