Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A Writer or an Architect?

I’ve always had a fascination with architecture. While in junior high school, I decided I wanted to be an Architect. I signed up for a drafting class when I got to high school. (Good thing too, because it was in that class that I met my future husband!)
While taking the architectural drafting class, I was given a wonderful opportunity. An actual architect called the teacher of my class, with an entry-level position in his firm. I called immediately after school, and was interviewed and offered the job.
Working in that office I learned a valuable lesson about designing a home. I learned that you couldn’t just design a floor plan, without thinking about the rest of the structure. What will the exterior look like? How will the roof work? And even more importantly, does the design meet the needs of the client it’s designed for?
As I’ve been working on my latest novel, I’ve come to realize that writing a book is like designing a home. I can’t start at the beginning, without having at least an idea of how it will end. I need to think about the middle, before I write myself into a corner. It’s a process that requires planning, and problem solving.
Just like I don’t want a large hole in the middle of my kitchen, I don’t want a hole in the middle of the story. I want to sit down and write this story, but every time I do, I realize how much more planning, or I should say research, I need to do first. I don’t really like to outline, but I’m finding it to be necessary on my WIP.


MT said...

I agree. I bet you can get away with a skeletal outline though, and go from there. :)

Annette Lyon said...

Great analogy--and so true.

Rebecca Irvine said...

This is something that surprises a lot of new writers. And it is a process that is more complicated than it seems.

L.T. Elliot said...

I love planning for my WIPs. I suppose it's the architect in me? Great post, Kim!