how to use your outline header

How to Use Your Outline When Writing Your First Draft

HOW TO USE YOUR OUTLINEOutlining your novel is one thing. But then, whether you prefer to outline with minimalism, maximalism, or hindsight (aka, in revisions), a surprisingly easy stumbling block can be that of figuring out how to use your outline in the first draft.

Recently, I received an email from Matt Powers, which made me realize that, out of all the dozens of posts I’ve written about outlining, I’ve never actually talked about how to use your outline when writing the first draft. Matt wrote:

I’ve read several of your writing books, as well as too many blog posts to count, and I don’t think I’ve seen this addressed. Forgive me if I missed it.

I have an extensive outline that I’m quite pleased with, and I’m about 40,000+ words into my first draft, but here’s the thing: I’m struggling with the actual writing and I can’t seem to get into the flow because I keep going back and forth between the draft and the outline. I have so much in my outline that I want to be sure to include, that I find I can only get a few sentences in before I’m pulled back to referencing the outline.

It’s like I have one eye on each, and it equals a slog of an experience!

I see tons of advice on how to create an outline, but very little on the practicality of actually using it. So I guess my question is, how do you utilize your outline when writing that first draft? How often are you referencing your outline as you write?

The How and Why of Outlining a Novel

For a long time, the writing world differentiated between writers who were “plotters” (those who planned/plotted a story before writing it) and writers who were “pantsers” (those who “write by the seat of their pants” with no upfront planning). However, over my years of outlining many books, writing many words about outlines, and learning about how other writers work, I’ve come to believe these distinctions are far too narrow.

At some point in the process, almost all writers end up outlining/plotting/planning. And at other points, we all end up pantsing/winging it/being spontaneously creative. In a craft as complex as that of novel-writing, both are equally important. How much outlining an author does upfront versus how much revision that same author does on the back end will vary greatly depending on each author’s personal mental wiring and creative preferences.

That said, let me now express a little of my personal passion for maximalist outlining. I write extensive outlines, which start out with largely incoherent stream-of-conscious ramblings and questioning, before eventually solidifying into detailed scene outlines that contain just about everything a first draft should except for narrative prose.

For example, here’s a snippet of the scene outline from my gaslamp fantasy Wayfarer (from the scene in which he “contracts” his super-speed):

Will flees for home. The trip is a blur. He’s nauseated, vomiting, and horribly dizzy, heart beating out of control, short of breath. I think that the powers should manifest just a little bit: his hands moving quicker than he’s used to, so he has trouble with the door latch. But he chalks it up to his illness.

And here’s approximately the same snippet from the corresponding scene in the first draft:

Through the weed-eaten garden, Will ran. Up and over first one stile, across the road, then the other stile. The night air cut through the sweat on his face. Even as he ran, his teeth rattled cruelly.

For the first time since he was a lad running this field at night, he caught his toe and fell on his face. Before he hit the soft soil, his stomach erupted. He vomited, and then he vomited again. The stars in the sky spun and spun, in every direction, up and down, in front and behind.

On hands and knees, he dragged himself forward, barely gaining his feet.

This time, there was no running; indeed, he could scarcely walk. He splashed into the knee-high stream before its gentle splashing even registered in his ears. He crossed without looking for the bridge. He would have been unable to see it in any case.

He staggered up to the house. His vision had gone completely dark, so maybe there was no light in the window.

>>Click here to read the complete transcript of my outline for my dieselpunk adventure Storming.

My goal in writing any outline is to, first, pour out all of my “dreams” about a given story. I want to number all the shiny pieces my subconscious creativity has given me.

Then, by the time I’m done with the outline, I want to have moved as thoroughly as possible through the first analytical pass. I use my scene outlines to work through a story’s logical progression. I want to figure out as many of the details as possible, everything from what props are available in a particular scene’s setting, to the specific action/reaction sequence of each scene’s structure, to the motivations of all on-stage minor characters.

In other words, I try to use my outline to answer every single question I can think of before I start writing the first draft. I do this for two intertwined reasons.

1. I want to write a clean first draft (because revisions:blech).

2. When writing my first draft, I want to turn away from my logical brain and immerse myself utterly in the imaginative dreamzone space of my story.

I can’t do the latter if my logical brain is always turning into Hermione-raising-her-hand-every-five-minutes. And I certainly can’t do both simultaneously if I haven’t already checked off the bulk of any story’s necessary causal analysis and troubleshooting.

This is why I outline. But how do I then take all these tens of thousands of words from my outline and seamlessly integrate them into the creative zone of my first draft?

5 Tips for How to Use Your Outline

How you choose to reference your outlining notes during the first draft will depend largely on the format of the notes themselves.

Writers who prefer the minimalist approach may create outlines that feature only a single phrase for each suggested scene, or even just a phrase for each important structural beat. In this case, referencing the outline is a comparatively simple and intuitive activity, since you’ll probably only need to check your notes at the beginning of each writing session. (In fact, some of these writers end up filling in their outlines simultaneously with their first drafts, as a way of keeping track of what they’re writing, for easy continuity checks.)

But what if, like me, you end up with enough outline notes to form a respectable pile of notebooks?

Completed Novel Outline Wayfarer K.M. Weiland

Completed outline for my gaslamp fantasy Wayfarer

In the case of maximalist outliners, it becomes essential to create a system for accessing all those juicy notes you’ve labored over, without constantly pulling yourself out of first-draft flow.

(Needless to say, writers who prefer to wait until after the first draft is altogether finished to do their logical thinking will have few, if any, notes to start with. Depending on the extent of required revisions, these authors may end up, to all essential purposes, following either the minimalist or maximalist crowd.)

Here are my top tips for organizing and using your outline notes, however few or many they may be.

1. Organize the Notes as You Go

Here’s the thing about piles upon pile of rambling notes that circle around randomly: they get to be a mess quick. This is especially true if you outline longhand like I do (if you’re interested in following my outlining process in a tidy digital approach, check out my Outlining Your Novel Workbook software).

The trick is to organize your outline notes as you’re writing them. Use color-coded highlighting systems to file your ideas for easy reference later. If you’re writing longhand, transcribe regularly (especially if, like moi, you can’t read your own writing after too much time passes). This will save you a ton of work in the interim between outline and first draft. You can thank me later.

Scene Outline Dreambreaker Highlights

2. Buy Scrivener

You can, of course, write and use even the most complex of outlines without Scrivener. But this powerhouse word processor for writers just makes everything so much easier. With its opportunities for folders and files and sub-files, among many other organizational gadgets, its a huge step up from juggling your story’s outline and first draft between separate Word files.

By the time I’m ready to write my first draft, I will have used Scrivener to organize my outline notes scene by scene, along with many sub-folders for reference material that includes everything from research notes to costume pictures to character interviews to the random bits of story info I call “orange notes” (because of the highlighter I use to color-code them).

Writing_Process_Scrivener_Character_Sketches_Interviews

This way, if I find myself needing to break concentration to check something, I don’t have to go far. With everything at my fingertips, I can quickly check myself, then jump back into writing.

3. Block Out a Beat-by-Beat “Storyboard” for Each Scene, But…

Now that we have our outline notes set up and optimally organized within Scrivener, what’s the best approach to referencing the notes without bumping out of the writing zone every five minutes?

Each time I begin writing a new scene, I review my notes and create a sequential list of everything that needs to happen in the scene. The list I used for the scene from Wayfarer, in the original section of this post, started out something like this:

  • Will is dizzy as he runs home across the field.
  • He trips and vomits.
  • He tries to get into the house, but his reflexes are too fast.

In essence, I’m creating a non-visual storyboard, with each beat blocked out.

4. …Don’t Do It Until the Last Minute

You’ll note I do this storyboarding whenever I’m ready to start writing a new scene. Feasibly, you could go ahead and write up the complete beat list for every scene before you start the first draft. This is an approach I consider with every book I write—and one I always reject.

Why?

Because my memory is faulty. I write best when I know what I’m writing. If I have to take a little time at the beginning of every scene to think my way through my scene outline, then I know my head will be in the right place. If I merely scanned a beat list I might have written months ago, I would inevitably miss some important moment on the list and end up constructing the scene inappropriately.

Writing up each scene’s beat-by-beat sequence refreshes my memory and lets me take full advantage of all the notes and ideas I labored over when in the outlining phase.

5. Paste Your Beat List Directly Into Your Scene Doc

Once I’ve knocked out my beat list, I put it in the main body of my scene’s Scrivener file. I position it on the screen so the first item of the list is just above the bottom of the screen, directly in my line of sight. This way, I can easily glance down and reference the beat I’m working on.

Wayfarer Chapter Five Outline in Process

As soon as I finish the beat, I’ll delete it, which raises the subsequent beat into view. Sometimes, of course, I won’t need to reference every beat. I may write several beats before needing to look down and check my progress.

This approach allows me to focus on bringing to life the first draft’s causes and effects without having to constantly click out of full-screen mode to make sure I’m adhering to the logical progression I already worked out.

***

Is this the most elegant approach to dealing with maximalist outline notes? Maybe not. It does require a little extra work before each scene. But over my years of outlining and writing almost a dozen novels, this is the method I’ve found most useful. It helps me make full use of my outlines and, as a result, allows me to write relatively clean first drafts from a place of uninterrupted creativity. As far as I’m concerned, that’s win-win!

How you outline, how much you outline, and how you use your outline when writing your first draft are all deeply personal parts of the writing process. Only you can figure out the nuances that will position you to write your best novel. But these tips may help you decide your own personalized tricks.

Wordplayers, tell me your opinions! Do you outline upfront? Has it been a challenge for you to figure out how to use your outline when writing the first draft? Tell me in the comments!

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About K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland

K.M. Weiland is the award-winning and internationally-published author of the acclaimed writing guides Outlining Your Novel, Structuring Your Novel, and Creating Character Arcs. A native of western Nebraska, she writes historical and fantasy novels and mentors authors on her award-winning website Helping Writers Become Authors.

Comments

  1. Stimulating and helpful, as usual. Thanks, Katie.
    For my next historical novel, I have a spreadsheet of dates of historic events interspersed with fictitious story events, plus several ‘background’ docs about the real and fictitious characters, etc. And I have some scenes sketched out in Scrivener. My problem is that I don’t yet know in what order to place the various scenes for best effect. I’ve come to realize that strict chronology is probably boring.
    Do you advise writing scene by scene and later rearranging them for maximum suspense, or deciding the sequence up front?

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I’ve always had best luck writing the book in its intended sequence, rather than hopping around. Foreshadowing and other subtle techniques develop more organically when the book is written in order.

  2. I’m just learning Scrivener. What a powerhouse! I probably won’t use all its whistles and bells right away, but I’m excited to be able to use it, especially the cork board. I love 3X5 cards! I’ve struggled with outlining my whole life-hated it in school. But, I can certainly see the advantage of using it, especially as I’ve experienced the dreaded question: “Now, which character was it way back in chapter (which chapter?) who threatened her with the butcher knife?” Then the hunt is on, using the find, going back to the beginning to make sure I don’t have 2 characters saying the same thing. Oy vey! Thanks, Kate for a very clear and informative post. I never miss yours!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Scrivener’s Keywords function is fantastic for keeping track of which characters/settings/props/subplots/thematic elements show up in any given scene.

  3. Casandra Merritt says

    Very helpful. I have found that when working on the first draft, I need to know my characters well, especially my Antagonist, and how everything will turn out in the end. Other than that, the details fill in by themselves. I do write a lot about my story, mostly to discover the theme, but I don’t know if you would call that an outline, because it’s mostly unusable and all runs together. My “outline” is what you described at the top. I don’t do scenes until later, and I have a single sentence for each plot point. Thanks!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      ” I don’t know if you would call that an outline, because it’s mostly unusable and all runs together.”

      Hah. I totally call that an outline. That’s an exact description of my early sketches, before I finally pull it together in a linear scene outline.

  4. I like the idea of a beat sheet. Having all the answers ready and waiting sounds like such a time saver for a first draft. Thanks for sharing your process.

  5. Bravo! Again!! I have been struggling with this question, trying several different routines, and I have not really tackled that beast. I will give your technique a try. Obviously, writing a 100K +/- tome over several months can be taxing, let alone the editing phase. How many times do we want to read our entire work of art. Tips and tricks (one bite at a time) are the only way one can hope to successfully complete the task. Many thanks, as always!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      “One bite at a time” is an excellent mantra for writers. Any work of fiction, but particular one as long as a novel, can sometimes seem like an insurmountable task. But it really is like eating the elephant–one bite at a time.

  6. This post was SO helpful for me, thank you so much!

  7. Hi katie,
    Thanks so much for this article, I’m currently developing my trilogy and have the same problem as the guy who wrote to you so I have devoured this post! I really love #5 because I hadn’t thought of that and have now began setting up my scrivener to ”flow’ when I’m writing.
    I’m so excited to write now, I was beginning to dread it because of all the notes I’d made.
    Debs

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      The last outline I wrote, for the Dreamlander sequel, was the most complicated outline I’ve ever written. I even had myself linking between Scrivener docs to indicate foreshadowing plants and payoffs, just to make sure I wasn’t forgetting anything or creating plot holes. It *did* feel a little overwhelming sometimes, but using this trusty method let me break everything down into very manageable pieces when it came time to do the actual writing.

  8. I am somewhat of a neophyte and early in my writer-to-author journey. Therefore, I am hesitant to offer anything even resembling advice. So, let me label this post as, “in-my-experience-only”.

    Matt Powers asks a great question. He quite nicely summarizes several questions on problem areas I’ve had on organization with physical notes, plot progression, and outline-to-draft transition. And, as usual, KM comes up with an awesome reply.

    My only comment would be she needs more emphasis on how her own software helps a writer stay organized well before the outlining process begins in earnest. The workbooks could replace the software, but reorganizing and rewriting in long hand would be a mess. So, in my experience, read her books on story structure and outlining; use her software to organize all your story’s details and characters; then use Scrivener to write your scenes.

    Over the past 18 months I’ve read and tried several approaches. I’ve settled on the approach above because it works for me. Here’s why. Once I have the plot well thought out, I can start describing what each scene is intended to tell reader. It also helps me avoid writer’s block because I know what to tell the reader and when.

    For what it’s worth . . . in my experience only . . .

  9. Get out of my head!

    Your posts have an almost frightening tendency to tackle exactly whatever issue I’m chewing on at the time! And this one was very helpful once again.

    I also tend towards “maximalist outlining” (in large parts thanks to your other great articles) and now translating the resulting Series Grid into a decent first draft has been quite a challenge. Though I’ve spent so much time poring over plot- and character-arcs, actually writing the scenes and characters sometimes feels almost weirdly “out of touch” with my original vision… As if I have the skeleton of my story set up with the outline, but right now I’m just randomly tacking on misshapen bits of meat like Dr. Frankenstein, and for now the creation looks nothing like a passable story. I guess it will require quite a bit of “cosmetic surgery” later down the line, i.e. revision….

    …but somehow I’m weirdly okay with that, and I feel almost empowered that I’m not letting it hold me back. Almost looking forward to polishing it eventually! 🙂 (passing the 50.000 word mark today!)

    So for now I think my own take away (in addition to your excellent tips) is: revisions may be “blech”, but for now my goal is to HAVE something to revise in the first place 🙂
    Thanks again and keep these amazing posts coming!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I’m glad you posted this. There’s always a balance, for all writers, between wanting to write as perfectly as possible in order to avoid revisions and not letting perfectionism or revision-avoidance stall you out in the first draft. Sometimes writing a messy first draft is absolutely the best approach. Better to finish a messy novel than not finish at all.

      • Thomas Pähler says

        Yeah, that “stalling” was exactly what was my problem in previous “first drafts” (technically, the current manuscript is more like a fourth first draft 😛 ). But at some point I realized that I kept stalling and abandoning the novel at roughly the same point, just before the middle part. I had the beginning, I knew what would happen in the end, but the road there was entirely unclear. -> Read all your articles, began obsessive outlining! Now at least I know exactly where I’m going and how 🙂

        • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

          What you’re illustrating here is a wonderful example of why authors must observe their own processes, identify the roadblocks, and figure out how to break through. Just because one writer says the process should work one way is no guarantee that it works that way for another writer. We all have unique challenges in getting the words on paper to make sense.

  10. Love this post. I love Evernote for digitally ordering my notes Since I always have my phone with me, if something pops up on my head, it’s very easy to just put a note in a stack and add tags to it.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I’ve always felt a little wistful that I’ve never gotten around to using Evernote. But my process works without it right now, and as I always say, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! But from everything I’ve heard, Evernote seems to offer some of the same easy organizational options that Scrivener does (thought without the word processor features, of course).

  11. I have a general outline when I start. I fill in some of the details later. Sometimes I change things, and I want the flexibility.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      Art is always and ever about finding the perfect and personal balance between order and chaos.

  12. C.M. - II Tim. 1:7 says

    Thumbs up! I know I’ll need to refer to this article again when I’ve finished reading and start to apply the lessons you gave in Outlining Your Novel and the Workbook. Thank you very much!!

  13. I’ve recently become okay with my writing-with-no-outline (or pantsing) ways. I discovered I simply can’t figure out what happens until I write it in the first draft! Thank you for acknowledging that we all write differently and that’s okay.

    But yes, I revise A LOT.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      There are tricks and tools that affect every part of the process. But at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is that we produce something other people like to read. 🙂

  14. Usvaldo de Leon says

    I outline moderately for a few weeks but when it comes time to write I toss it aside and never look at it again. I have to write to understand what I’m writing about and to nail down theme and some of the plot points.
    The me who does the outline is not the me who does the writing, and it’s important to recognize what i might like in an outline doesn’t always work for me while writing.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      That’s interesting. What is your purpose for starting with an outline when you know you’re going to set it aside?

      • Usvaldo de Leon says

        It helps clarify thoughts and general plot direction; it gets me started. But I can’t figure it all out until I begin writing – actively thinking it through.
        Like maybe in my outline of The Great Escape I’ll envision Steve McQueen getting shot after an early attempt. “Ah, this sets the stakes”. But then as I write it I will realize that McQueen embodies the spirit of resistance and can never die and that will start changing the story. But I won’t know that til I start writing.

  15. Hi, I just wanted to comment that I more or less use your #5 idea most of the time when writing now–that is pasting notes into the document. When I’m actually working on outline and prep, I go through a fresh-copy notebook of notes I’ve culled from all the plot & structure studies I’ve done over time. Then I fill in my thoughts for the current book project and paste my new notes into the the pertinent scenes of my WIP. Sometimes I will even give myself directions like “This is the mid-point.” It makes for a document that seems bulky to start with, but really helps the flow as I go.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      One of the features I love in Scrivener is the ability to create files within folders. I use the files for chapters, which are contained within folders pertaining to the structural parts (1A, 1B, 2A, etc.). It makes everything so much easier to access than back in the old days when I wrote my manuscript all in one big Word document.

  16. Thank you for the post. Extremely helpful. This has always been a major struggle of mine; translating my outline into a first draft.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      My goal with outlines has always been to smooth the transition of the various necessary parts of the creative process–particularly the logical parts versus the straight-up creative parts.

  17. Lila Diller says

    I could probably write an entire blog post in response–I may have to do that! 😉 But for now, I’ll try to condense.

    I consider myself more of a plotter than pantser, because IRL I like to plan ahead for everything and pack for every contingency. But my writing process has evolved over time to mesh both methods together.

    The reasons for your incredibly detailed outlining — I’ve never heard of any prewriting so intense! — are the same for why my method is so minimalist:
    1. “I want to write a clean first draft (because revisions:blech).”
    I feel that my writing has evolved enough that if I visualize a scene in my imagination, then I can capture it pretty well, enough for a clean rough draft. I used to love the revision process, throwing down anything in that first draft just so I could get to the second draft’s revising magic. I think that stemmed from my inferiority complex that my first draft couldn’t be worth anything. But I’ve learned so much that, while still needing revisions and editors, I know that even my rough draft won’t contain much crap.

    2. “When writing my first draft, I want to turn away from my logical brain and immerse myself utterly in the imaginative dreamzone space of my story.” I see your overly-detailed prewriting as already being in the imaginative space and now this rough draft is actually more of a second draft. I personally feel like this kind of visualizing the scene that you do in your outline would stifle my actual writing–I would already be striving for that perfect phrase or searching for the perfect synonym with the right rhythm.

    But, it works for you, and that’s perfectly fine. One thing I have learned is that what works for one writer doesn’t necessarily work for another writer. Just because Stephen King writes every single day doesn’t mean I have to. My creative brain needs a sabbath, a rest of at least one day a week to recharge. The same goes with outlining. What works for one writer doesn’t work for everybody.

    My process is more of a bulleted list of beats, how to get the characters from the beginning scene to the resolution. Then I reorder, add in subplots, and insert each of these phrases or sentences into separate chapters. I keep my notes highlighted in my document so that I never start a new chapter with a blank page. This is usually enough to stimulate my imagination to visualize the scene enough to start writing. If I can’t visualize a particular scene that day, I go on to the next. I skip around and write what I’m in the mood to write, not necessarily from chapter 1 chronologically until I reach The End.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      This is great! Thanks for sharing.

      This: “I see your overly-detailed prewriting as already being in the imaginative space and now this rough draft is actually more of a second draft.”

      100% accurate! I often think of my scene outlines as very rough first drafts. They’re just not written in “prose.”

  18. authormattgianni says

    Nice post! I really like the idea that nobody’s really a 100% plotter or 100% pantser, but that they rather fit somewhere in the continuum between the two extremes. The outline for my 99k-word debut was 17k words, broken out by time, location, POV, setting, scene (goal, conflict, disaster), sequel (reaction, dilemma, decision), and foretelling – so I’m much closer to the plotter end of the spectrum. While transitioning from a structure-level outline to a scene-level outline, the rule I give myself is to detail out that scene (plotting) until I’m confident I can start writing those eight or ten pages (pantsing).

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      “The rule I give myself is to detail out that scene (plotting) until I’m confident I can start writing those eight or ten pages (pantsing).”

      This.

      This is exactly what I do as well. My goal is basically to try to answer any questions I know will need answering if I’m going to be able to write the scene smoothly.

  19. robintvale (Jessica) says

    I’m an accidental plantser and will continue things this way with this first book. I can’t wait to be able to buy Scrivener and try it out I’ll admit I’ve gone to the website and drooled over it, it looks amazing.

    For now, word-pad will have to do when on my pc and when on mobile the color note app, and then the character planner app will have to do. I have so many files on color note like the ghost, a to-do list so I don’t forget important things like killing the flashbacks, repairing the dialogue, reminders to have the main pov use her powers more as after chatter two she stops. Another note to secure a website. Another note with the god’s names as I often forget them, the worlds name too.

    Merrly’s life goal, plot hole fixes, world-building bits that need tweaking, plot goal, plot hole fix, notes about the first plot point, a full note (folder) just for the antoganists.) Reminders to slash the word count, story questions that I think readers might ask and I need to answer, their wants and needs. It goes on and on 😛 Learning how to organise ourselves when writing is a tough still. Hea.

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I think you’re smart not switch word processors midstream. I waited to start using Scrivener when I started a new project, which turned out to be a good plan–for me anyway.

  20. This is the article I’ve been hoping for! I knew what was always causing me to be stuck, but I could never put it into words – until I read this article!
    I do a lot of extensive research while “cherry picking” what I’m going to need for my books, then I isolate it all in one main binder. I have struggled with the problem of trying to plot and create at the same time. This article was eye-opening and I now see how I can move forward creating stronger tighter scenes and working more productively. THANK YOU!!

    • K.M. Weiland | @KMWeiland says

      I find I definitely work best when I’m able to separate the aspects of the process into distinct chunks–logic and creativity being the broadest categories.

  21. Loved this–another great and useful post!

  22. ingmarhek says

    I enjoyed this post.
    Index cards and port-it notes are my best friends when outlining.
    Not a fan of Scrivener. There has to be a user-friendly alternative to it.

  23. Sheri Byler-Yutzy says

    I find outlines extremely overwhelming, but necessary, so thank you for sharing your process. I dream of someday working through outlining and drafting with confidence—but I think it’ll take a few go arounds before I’m there.

  24. Hey guess what––our schoolteacher was recommended to read an article of yours and when she didn’t know who you were, I told her all about you and how you know who I am! I just thought that was pretty cool. You can say “hi” to my class and I’ll send it to all of them if you want. 🙂

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