| David Gane

Outlines and midpoints

The interesting thing about outlines is their flexibility.

The script I am currently working on had a minimal outline, which means the main acts were defined, with every ten minutes plotted out. The detail wasn't extensive but if gave my writing partner and I about five pages of notes to work from.

Yet, as soon as we moved into act two, the plan quickly fell apart and we were always working at a loss of about ten pages on the way to the midpoint. To bridge that distance, we kept pulling ideas from the second half of act two.

Now, we are past the middle and dealing with the missing beats that we used up earlier, yet it's not affecting the story. New beats are showing up and filling themselves in.

This reminds me that the midpoint can shift. What you think is the middle might not be true and it isn't until you get into the physical writing that you'll figure this out.

Also, since this is the first draft, the middle may shift again. It's never set in stone until it's up on the screen or on the printed page.

Tags: Writing

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