Many of my friends have lost parents or uncles in the past two weeks. Those of us who have reached "a certain age" find our friends or their parents failing. Younger friends who have not reached the "certain age" lose members of their parents' generation. Life, it seems, is fleeting. That's why the Japanese use the cherry blossom as a favorite poetic metaphor for life's impermanence.
So too is it with writing. We work hard to put our best words on paper (or in the computer) only to find that better words come along. We edit. We send out meager efforts to friends who come back with comments for "improvement." So far, I've been lucky. No one has said I should seek alternate employment, but I learn every time I sit at my keyboard.
I've recently been beta-testing an online master class taught by a New York Times bestselling author, Many times over bestselling author. He writes genre fiction. He writes books we want to escape in and emerge hours later satisfied we've enjoyed a good read. I was halfway through the course when he came to two lessons on outlining. I wanted to skip them. I'm a panster. I write by the seat of my pants and let the words flow. I then hit the edit mode and go through many iterations.
This writer says he spends a month or two writing and rewriting the outline. Not the type we learned in school. Not I. A. 1. a. but a working description of what happens in every scene. EVERY scene. Who's in it. Why it's important. What the conflict is. By the time he is finished with the outline, he can sit back and let the sentences flow.
I stood after his lesson, took my Wonder Woman pose and said, "Yes I can." Moreover, yes I will