The Prewriting Trap


I've been working for a couple months on a new story, and I fell into the same whole I always do: too much prewriting.

I don't just outline, I dig into every character and setting element, and while some of that is necessary, it can easily get out of hand.

When I say every, I really mean every. I get really involved with the setting and start looking at more and more of the ephemera of the setting. I once wrote 90,000 words of backstory for a 54,000 word story.

I talk to my friends about the iceberg effect of my writing style. For my previous series, I wrote 10 words of backstory for every 1 word of story.

Now that I am starting to do it again, I am at least happy I can see it this time. I am not sure what I want to do about it.

Part of me thinks I should post it all on the site, but, as I learned with Dragons of Night, it takes a lot of time to edit the material and make it reader-worthy.

I might continue to do that, but as for this project, I am going to pull back and focus on the story.

I am curious what you all think. I am open to suggestions.