If I am late getting out the door in the morning by four minutes (4!), the ride into work is hell. School buses pull over to drop off kids, cars zoom by weaving in their lane as folks brush their teeth on their way into the office, and Santa Rosa City buses own the right lane. There’s no way they are gonna wait for a lowly cyclist before pulling out into traffic.
But, if I leave just four minutes earlier (believe me, I’ve timed it), then life is good. No one suddenly stops in the middle of the right lane to drop off their kids, the buses haven’t hit my section of road yet, and I get to work with plenty of time to change; my heart rate barely above 60 beats/minute.
Timing is everything.
As in life, so too with fiction writing.
I am floundering with my novel at the moment, because a few key plot points have not been timed all that well. I can’t mentally get past it to continue the story. At the risk of rewriting the first third of the story, I may have to go back and fix those key points before moving on. So much for my outline.
Though my outline has gotten me into this predicament, I have to give credit where it is due. I wouldn’t have gotten this far without it.
Here are some random articles on outlining from around these intertubes: