writing an outline sent signals to my brain that i have actually finished the story
That’s exactly why I never tried outlining before 2013, I’d heard a number of author’s say that. I guess I’ll find out! I have definitely not “over-outlined” here, hopefully just enough to keep the story moving in the right direction and hitting its marks, but leaving lots of room for surprises. In developing the characters’ back stories, it became really clear to me how these people are related to and interconnected with one another, even without telling the story outright. I know the first scene and the last in some detail, the climax in general, and ten or so stops along the way that need to happen to bring it all together. So it’s kind of like sitting down at the potter’s wheel with with all the clay and water and glaze and such you’ll need to make a pot, but you still have to spin the thing and put your hands on it and shape it to make it a reality. That’s how I’m looking at the process, anyway… Thanks, Dewi!