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Writing Books/Part of the Writing Process


I'm writing a novel right now. It's an adventure/horror/comedy/romance novel. The thing is when I first got the idea for this novel, I jumped right in. I didn't go through the whole writing process. So I never had an outline. It's all in my head, really. I do know how the story is going to end and pretty much everything else.It's just that sometimes I find myself wandering.

It's not to late to make an outline if it's necessary. But the question is; is it really necessary? And for that matter, will it bite me in the butt later if I don't go through the proper process now?

Thank you.

Hi, Chelsie!

I'm not sure who told  you that there's a "proper process" for writing novels, but you'll be happy to know there isn't! You're more than welcome to write the whole book without a single note. About half of the authors on the shelves today do that very thing. Now, if you WANT to write an outline, that's fine too. But there's no requirement to do so. Does that help? :D


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Cathy Clamp


I'm happy to answer questions about any aspect of writing novels, from the beginning kernel of an idea through completion. I can help with writing a query letter and synopsis to an agent or editor. I can explain publishing terminology and acronyms. I can also assist with questions about verifying the credentials of agents/publishers and how to proceed once you've been accepted for publication. I can teach the rules of formatting a manuscript, creating viable plots, characterization and flow in the following genres: romance, science fiction, fantasy, thrillers, suspense, horror, women's fiction, mainstream and mystery.


I'm a USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy and paranormal romance for Tor/Forge Books. Along with a co-author, I've published fifteen novels (combination of mass market and trade softcover) since 2003, and have contracts for four more books through 2011.

Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Western Outdoor Writers, Horror Writers of America.

Tor/Forge Books, Western Reflections Publishing, BenBella Books, Running Press, Wild Child Publishing. Many others.

My educational background is limited to real life experience of publishing novels commercially for the past five years.

Awards and Honors
USA Today bestseller, Waldenbooks Mass Market Paperback Top 20 bestseller, Nielsen BookScan Top 20 bestseller, RT BOOKreviews Career Achievement Award winner, 2009, Book Buyers Best Award for Paranormal, Romantic Times Best Werewolf Novel, Write Touch Readers Award, EVVY Best Historical Chronicle Award, The Lories Best Paranormal. Many others.

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