I will not panic about how much planning I have yet to do.
I will not!
Really, though. I’ve solved a major problem in my planning when I realized something.
My biggest problem is that I already know the plot.
I know that my character is just spinning her wheels and chasing dead ends throughout X and Y scenes. I know that the game-changer is just around the corner and that her big moments are on the way.
And yet those holes in my beat sheet are showing me that this isn’t enough. My character is a whole lot more desperate than that. Sure, I know she’ll find the killer at the dramatic showdown approximately 72 hours later, but she doesn’t. And she is absolutely terrified of failing!
The character I built wouldn’t just wait around for the next plot twist to happen. She wouldn’t cross her fingers and hope she’ll trip over the murderer’s feet while navel-gazing and wandering in circles.
So that’s my project for today. I’m peeling away all the plot-to-come and just focusing on what my character knows and has available to her at each scene. It sounds so silly, how could I have missed something so completely obvious until right now, but writing is funny that way. I’ve put so much effort into making sure she has a hard time of things that I’ve neglected what she can actually do for herself, and what would make sense for her to do in the context of what’s happened so far.
How about you? Don’t panic, we still have 2 weeks left to plan. What are you doing today to make sure your story has plenty of meat on the bones?